Kati Michalek gives an insight into the recent jam-packed masterclass for the CACHE researchers:
“We proudly present our second CACHE masterclass entitled ‘Shellfish Aquaculture’, which took place from the 6th to the 8th of July at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS), Oban Scotland. The course included lectures as well as practical sessions, starting off with an overview about the global and local shellfish industry, its impacts and requirements and applying all this knowledge when designing our very own shellfish farm! The second day focused on environmental monitoring along shellfish farm operations, especially for harmful algal blooms as they can cause shellfish poisoning in human consumption. As part of that, we investigated water samples from Scottish sea lochs, identified phytoplankton species and learned more about critical threshold levels for the occurrence of harmful algae.
The last course day started early and we drove to the north of the Ardnamurchan peninsula to FAI Aquaculture Ltd in Ardtoe, a shellfish and finfish hatchery providing research and production facilities for marine aquaculture and technology. We enjoyed a day out learning about the everyday work at FAI, their contribution to pan-national science projects and especially their commercial production of oyster spat.
We had lessons to learn about the production of algal feed for the young oysters, their reproduction and rearing as well as oyster nursery and disease/hygiene controls.
Back home at SAMS we closed our Masterclass with an exciting day about communication in science. We learned that communication techniques differ with the media they are presented in, whether it is press, radio or TV. After discussing how to improve our future press releases we produced our own CACHE short film – stay tuned!