Experiment 2

We started another experiment last week (24th November) following up on a hunch from Rob Moxham and the Broken Bay Oyster growers that the floating basket culture technique may offer some protection from POMS (oysters grow in surface water with higher exposure to sunlight/UV, and potentially a different water temperature being close to the surface). We have placed Pacific oysters of three different ages (4, 12 and 24 months old) in floating baskets close to our oyster trays at our three sites (A, B and C) in the Georges River. We have set this up as a controlled experiment – the controls being oysters in trays at the standard growing height. John Stubbs, Bruce Alford and Rob Moxham provided all the materials required (oysters, baskets, rope) and we received full support from the Drake family to get this grower-initiated research trial up and running within 24hours of the idea being raised. This was important because it had to be done while POMS is active. The experiment is currently running, and no sampling is being undertaken on these baskets/trays as the global mortality is being checked as often as possible with two major aims:

–        To determine whether different culture systems provide different  survival rates among oysters of different size/age

–        To determine the window of POMS infection in the Georges River as new batches will be placed at the sites every month

Floating baskets in the Georges River; there is a tray on a rack next to the baskets which acts as a control in this experiment