Building a disease-resilient oyster industry

2013 Research Award Highly Commended

Dr Melanie Bishop, Faculty of Science

Australian oysters support a valuable food industry ($73.3 million a year) and promote healthy estuaries by providing vital ecosystem services. QX disease is economically and environmentally important because it causes mass mortality of Sydney rock oysters.

To restore oyster production, managers are trialling aquaculture of triploid Pacific oysters and QX-resistant Sydney rock oysters in QX-affected estuaries. Our research has ascertained that these strategies have negligible impacts on wild oyster populations and ecosystem service provision.

Our research has facilitated expansion of the Pacific oyster industry and Sydney rock oyster selective breeding programs, helping to build a sustainable oyster industry.

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