UVI harvests first batch in shrimp-raising project

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
28 April 2006, at 1:00am

ST. CROIX - The University of the Virgin Islands Agricultural Experiment Station harvested about 100 pounds of shrimp from four tanks on Wednesday - the station's latest project to determine whether a high-dollar commodity could be produced successfully in the territory. The Agricultural Experiment Station imported baby shrimp from a Dominican Republic hatchery in January. The baby shrimp, one of the most commonly cultured species in the Western Hemisphere, arrived in full-strength seawater. Researchers at the experiment station acclimated them to diluted water, a mix of sea and fresh water. "That basically allowed us to move production inland and away from the ocean," said Jason Danaher, UVI research specialist. "In a controlled environment, you can give them a good diet that can get them to market size a couple of months sooner than in the ocean." In tanks, shrimp are raised in a higher density, meaning more shrimp per volume of water, and are retrieved more easily than dragging a cage or net in the ocean, he said. "It's a good species for aquaculture and good in a contained environment," he said. Although the harvesting proved successful, the yield was "disappointing," Danaher said. Source: Virgin Islands Daily News