Hatchery and nursery technology

The CUDLS System for larval rearing

Working towards the future

Shellfish aquaculture is currently the only primary industry in New Zealand that still relies on wild seed for on-growing.

However, New Zealand's shellfish industry is set to become the world's first to benefit from total domestication – due both to Cawthron's science and innovation, and industry committment.

Hatchery and nursery technology

Modern aquaculture includes the production of seed in hatcheries and nurseries.

We've developed a unique way to produce this seed ('spat') for commercial on-growing of mussels, oysters and paua. We are now converting and improving this knowledge into technology that can be used by industry. 

Technologies developed by Cawthron include:

  • innovative larval rearing systems that enable a large number of shellfish families to be produced simultaneously in a high density continuous flow through system (CUDLS)
  • continuous flow nursery tank systems to rear shellfish larvae and spat, and hold broodstock
  • pond nursery systems for production of Pacific oysters. This system can also be used for Flat oysters and scallops
  • an integrated hatchery monitoring system
  • cost-effective seed production systems that accommodate the biological needs of aquaculture species.

Broodstock conditioning and larval rearing

We condition broodstock and produce larvae from a wide range of species including the Greenshell™ mussel, Pacific oyster, Flat oyster, geoduck and paua.

Specialised systems allow us to hold broodstock and create the right environment to encourage them to come into condition. We can then spawn conditioned broodstock (i.e., produce eggs and sperm) and cross these to produce offspring.

Microalgae production

Cawthron can produce a range of algae to meet hatchery and nursery feed requirements using a combination of batch culture, continuous culture and pond systems. Find out more.

Contact us

Contact us

Phone +64 3 548 2319