aquaculturetank2009Mariculture Research and Development Capability

The mission of the Mariculture R&D program is to discover, develop and commercialize safe, effective and sustainable methods for marine food production using landā€based facilities and to conduct research on fish nutrition and development of diets that are nutritionally balanced, environmentally sound, and provide maximum growth for fish and crustaceans.

The program encompasses all aspects of mariculture research and commercial development, including: broodstock management, hatchery operation, larviculture, diet and nutrition, pollution control systems, seafood economics and marketing.

R&D efforts have been focused on local, commercially important species that have declining populations in the wild: Summer and Southern Flounder, Black Sea Bass and Red Porgy (Sea Bream). We collaborate with local fish farms, companies, the feed industry and scientists engaged with aquaculture.

Our successes include:

  • Research-based and pilot-scale studies intended to target not only university-funded projects but also private studies.
  • Small-scale, high quality zein-bound artificial micro-diets for larval fish. Black sea bass and flounder diets have already been tested for palatability, nutritional efficiency and fish texture and flavor.
  • Conducting laboratory feeding trials on behalf of supplement companies, commodity merchants, grain and feedstuff manufacturers and feed and milling companies.
  • Consulting on projects such as shorter grow-out cycles by the use of more environmentally and economically efficient and streamlined feeds and feed formulation and feeding strategies tailored to the requirements of specific species.

The MARBIONC Mariculture R&D program is run under the auspices of the University of North Carolina Wilmington's Center for Marine Science located on Wrightsville Beach in North Carolina.

Commercial opportunities to introduce the first eco-friendly feed for herbivorous and carnivorous ornamental fish are available through MARBIONC Development Group, LLC. Please contact Steven Fontana, Manager, at or via telephone at 910-962-2014.