AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Longtime Auburn University faculty member and administrator John Jensen has been named interim director of the newly renamed School of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences, effective Sept. 1, College of Agriculture Dean Bill Batchelor has announced.
“The fisheries program at Auburn is the best in the world, and Dr. Jensen has been an integral part of that success over the years,” Batchelor said. “His track record of excellence as a professor, Extension specialist and administrative leader make him a natural fit for this role.”
AUBURN UNIVERSITY –Aquaculture expert William Walton will discuss the business of oyster production on Alabama’s Gulf Coast Thursday, April 18, at 3 p.m. in Special Collections and Archives at the Ralph Brown Draughon Library. Walton’s talk is part of the Discover Auburn lecture series.
Walton is an assistant professor in the Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures in Auburn University’s College of Agriculture and is also a specialist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. He is stationed at the Auburn University Marine Extension and Research Center in Mobile and conducts research at the Auburn University Shellfish Laboratory on Dauphin Island.
AUBURN UNIVERSITY – A patented Auburn University-developed process that cleanly converts inedible waste from the slaughter of animals into marketable products is making its commercial debut this summer with the opening of Alabama Protein Products LLC at Kyser Family Farms, a catfish operation in Hale County.
Alabama Protein, which is expected to employ five to 10 people and give the state’s catfish industry an economic boost, is the first private venture ever to use the trademarked Agricultural Byproduct Value Recovery System, or ABVRS, a quick, energy-efficient and environmentally sound rendering process that, as opposed to conventional rendering methods, creates no foul odors, toxic emissions or wastewater as it recycles animal tissue from food processing plants and other agricultural byproducts into both high-protein fish meal for use in poultry, livestock and fish feed and heart-healthy omega 3 fish oil.
AUBURN – Michael Chislock, a Ph.D. student in Auburn University’s Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures, has been awarded a three-year, $126,000 graduate fellowship from the Environmental Protection Agency to fund his doctoral research on the ecological control of toxic blue-green algae in freshwater ecosystems.
The prestigious research award is funded through the EPA’s highly competitive Science to Achieve Results, or STAR, program.
“Blue-green algae traditionally have been managed using repeated applications of algaecides,” Chislock said. “Our findings could lead to a cost-effective and sustainable alternative form of management.”
Chislock is focusing primarily on the aquaculture industry, where blue-green algae, commonly known as pond scum, can cause fish kills and off-flavor problems that can be financially devastating for producers. But he says that blue-green algae have also been implicated in the poisoning of drinking water supplies, food webs, pets and humans.
AUBURN – Researchers at Auburn University have teamed up with colleagues from Louisiana State University to launch a new oyster farming initiative that could help stimulate the economy in the northern Gulf of Mexico region.
The goal of the effort is industry adoption of off-bottom oyster culture to supplement the traditional harvest. Historically, oysters are grown on and harvested from reefs on the water bottom. In this new process, oysters are grown suspended in the water column.
AUBURN – Stephen “Ash” Bullard, assistant professor in the Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures in Auburn University’s College of Agriculture, recently received a $145,000 National Science Foundation for Rapid Response Research grant for work related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
The 12-month study will be conducted by Bullard and Middle Tennessee State University biology professor George Benz. Beginning this month, the researchers will study parasites of fish as biosensors to learn how the toxic effects of the spill impact the marine and coastal environment of Alabama.