The queen conch, Strombus gigas, is deeply rooted in the way of life in the Caribbean region. It is one of the most commercially important fisheries and many island communities depend on it for sustenance and their livelihoods. Intensive fishing and habitat degradation, however, have caused conch populations to significantly dwindle.
Florida Atlantic University Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute Research published Queen Conch Aquaculture: Hatchery and Nursery Phases User Manual . The manual was designed and written by professor, Megan Davis and science communicator and designer, Victoria Cassar.
The manual includes the science and art of growing queen conch that Davis has developed over her 40-year career designing, implementing and operating experimental size aquaculture facilities, as well as production-scale facilities, in Florida and throughout the Caribbean. In addition, Robinson Bazurto provided advice on Chapter 4: Growing Microalgae.
This edition is written for the Puerto Rican fishers of the Naguabo Fishing Association who are learning to operate the Naguabo Queen Conch Hatchery and Nursery. However, the majority of the information presented in this manual can be applied to other queen conch hatchery and nursery projects to produce conch for sustainable seafood, conservation and restoration. This manual is also available in Spanish.
This manual is a deliverable of the Saltonstall-Kennedy NOAA Fisheries grant (NA19NMF4270029) “Development of a Fishers Operated Pilot-Scale Queen Conch (Strombus gigas) Hatchery and Nursery Facility for Sustainable Seafood Supply and Restoration of Wild Populations in Puerto Rico.”
Download the manual here.