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Mussels on poles at an aquaculture farm

Completed project

Project start: April 2015  |  Project end: December 2019
Funder: Biotechnology and Biological Science Research Council (BBSRC) and Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
Principal Investigator: Dr Peter Miller
Other participants from PML: Dr Andrey Kurekin, Dr Hayley Evers-King, Dr Victor Martinez-Vicente

The ShellEye project will use Earth observation data from satellites and environmental data, such as weather forecasts, to monitor and forecast water quality for the aquaculture industry towards providing an early warning system for harmful algal blooms, and bacterial and viral pollution.

EU shellfish food hygiene regulations require aquaculture sites to fall below strict limits for E. coli and phytoplankton toxins. With improved warnings, farms could minimise financial losses, for example by optimising harvesting and avoiding costly recalls of products.

PML is leading the project, which involves partners at University of Exeter, Scottish Association of Marine Science (SAMS) and Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), as well as stakeholders in aquaculture companies in Cornwall and Scotland. The first part of the project will focus on the development of novel monitoring and short-term forecasting techniques. During the latter stages of the project, and to support the busiest time in the shellfish calendar, we will pilot the first shellfish monitoring service using these novel approaches.

This project is funded through the joint Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) call on sustainable aquaculture.