Oman aquaculture research breed fast growing abalones
OMAN- KHALFA Al-Rashdi, a first-year research postgraduate student at the Institute of Aquaculture (IOA), University of Stirling, has been awarded the first prize for scientific innovation in the field of aquaculture for 2010 by the Arab Organization for Agricultural Development (AOAD).
This prize was awarded for his research on hatchery and seed production in an Omani species of Abalone, Haliotis mariae, carried out in the Sultanate of Oman before he started his studies in Stirling.
The award ceremony was held in the Sultanate of Oman during the 32nd AOAD General Assembly in the presence of all of the Arab ministers of agriculture and fisheries from the 22 member countries. These awards are designed to develop agricultural and fisheries research in Arab countries, and to recognise the achievements of researchers from these countries. There were more than 100 entries in the aquaculture technology field.
Al-Rashdi, who still holds a position as head of fish hatcheries technology at the Oman Aquaculture Centre, worked earlier as an abalone aquaculture specialist and research project leader for abalone seed production research project from 1999-2006 in Oman. The main conclusion of his research was that the Oman abalone is one of the fastest growing abalone species in aquaculture; it reaches an average shell length of 60mm over 13 months, which translates to an increment of 4.1mm per month.
Abalone are one of the most expensive seafoods in the world. Al-Rashdi has several scientific and extensional publications on abalone and sea cucumber seed production in both Arabic and English. He joined the genetics and reproduction group in the IOA last November, and is carrying out research on the assessment of body traits in tilapia, currently by CT scanning.
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