Fish Farming

The fish farming industry in Ireland is a thriving one. It produces mostly finfish, such as salmon and trout, and shellfish such as mussels. Also known as aquaculture or aqua-farming, fish farming is the process of cultivating fish for commercial purposes in a controlled environment using tanks or enclosures. Rearing fish in this manner alleviates some of the pressure from high market demand for particular fish species and on over-fishing of wild fish. During the fish farming process, some fish species are raised to juvenile size and released into the ocean to supplement depleting fish stocks.

Mariculture is a term used to describe the farming of marine animals and plants including: seaweeds, mussels, oysters, shrimp, prawns, cod, turbot and salmon. The process employs a variety of techniques including offshore net cages for fish, onshore pumped seawater tanks, rafts and longlines from which mussel ropes are suspended and onshore bags and trestles for growing oysters. In Ireland, the main species under cultivation include salmon, trout, oysters and mussels with some farming of less common species of shellfish such as clams, abalone and even lobsters.

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