David Cline, Extension Aquaculturist, Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn University
Water quality is a critical factor when culturing any aquatic organism. Optimal water quality varies by species and must be monitored to ensure growth and survival. The quality of the water in the production systems can significantly affect the organism's health and the costs associated with getting a product to the market. Water quality parameters that are commonly monitored in the aquaculture industry include temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, alkalinity, hardness, ammonia, and nitrites. Depending on the culture system, carbon dioxide, chlorides, and salinity may also be monitored. Some parameters such as alkalinity and hardness are fairly stable, but others like dissolved oxygen and pH fluctuate daily. It is important to establish a standardized water quality testing protocol for your particular situation. Know the tolerance range for your culture species, establish critical levels, and be prepared to act if a problem occurs. The chart below indicates the water quality preferences for some commonly cultured species. For more information about a particular parameter, click one of the links below. If you need assistance in this area, contact your local Cooperative Extension office.
|Species||Temp °F||Dissolved Oxygen mg/L||pH||Alkalinity mg/L||Ammonia %||Nitrite mg/L|
|Hybrid Striped Bass||70-85||4-10||6-8||50-250||0-0.03||0-0.6|
Ammonia in Fish Ponds (pdf)
Nitrite in Fish Ponds (pdf)
The following article can be downloaded from the North Central Regional Aquaculture Center's website: