|Aquaculture/Fisheries Center Research|
|About Our Research|
Arkansas is the second leading aquaculture producing state in the U.S. Nationally,
it is #2 in catfish production, and #1 in baitfish, goldfish,
sport-fish, largemouth bass, hybrid striped bass,
and Chinese carp production. Aquaculture has a total economic impact of over $1.1 billion in Arkansas,
primarily in the impoverished Delta region. In Chicot Co. alone, the catfish industry created 2,665 jobs
and $22 million in tax revenue. Recreational fishing is a major tourist attraction
for Arkansas that
contributes $446 million to the state's economy annually through direct and indirect expenditures. The
University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) Aquaculture/Fisheries Center is charged with statewide responsibility
to provide research and extension support for aquaculture and fisheries for the state. The Center works
with industry through research and extension to develop research-based solutions to improve industry
productivity and competitiveness. Research findings provide the basis for extension educational programs
that are conducted state-wide to stakeholder groups. Scientists lead research programs in:
Core research programs are targeted towards the primary program areas of:
Arkansas is the birthplace of the catfish
industry in the U.S. and currently is the second leading catfish
producing state. Catfish
are raised throughout the eastern half of Arkansas with a major
concentration in the S.E. corner.
Research efforts in catfish have focused on pond management strategies related to stocking densities and sizes, production economics, diseases, new dietary ingredients, intensifying production to increase yields, catfish marketing, new equipment development for catfish production, and value-added products from catfish.
Arkansas is the leading producer of baitfish
nationwide, producing about 80% of all farm-raised baitfish produced
in the U.S. The
industry began in Arkansas in the 1940s and has continued to develop
innovative ways to improve efficiencies.
Aquaculture/Fisheries Center research on baitfish in recent years has focused on the development of hatchery techniques for the major bait species raised (golden shiners, goldfish, and fathead minnows), nutritional requirements and diets for various life stages, stocking and feeding rates, and diseases.
|Recreational Fishing in the Delta|
Arkansas, the Natural State, has abundant aquatic
resources that attract increasing numbers of tourists for
recreation. Recreational fishing is an important component.
Aquaculture/Fisheries Center research has focused on largemouth bass populations and stocking programs in the Arkansas River, fisheries populations in the White River, and the crappie fishery in Lake Chicot. New studies will examine the potential to use hybrid striped bass to correct stunted prey populations in farm ponds, and to develop recommendations for successful community and urban fishing programs in the state.
|While the primary research emphasis is on catfish, baitfish, and recreational fishing in the Delta, other studies address issues with other fish species and topics. These lines of research include work on hybrid striped bass early life stages, nutritional requirements of pacu, fish marketing in Latin America, economics of effluent treatment, ion requirements of marine shrimp raised in freshwater, and testing pesticides and herbicides for toxicity to fish and effects on plankton blooms, among others.|