Abalone


Latin names: Haliotis rubra, H. laevigata, H. conicopora, H. roei


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Farmed

Region:
WA, VIC, SA, TAS

Key Facts

  • Abalone are farmed on land and in the ocean.
  • Abalone are herbivorous and fed diets made from fast-growing algae. This has a low impact on marine ecosystems.
  • Farms have a small impact on their surrounding environment as waste is minimal.
  • There is some risk of disease outbreaks in abalone farms spreading to wild abalone populations; strict controls on disease management now protect wild abalone from farm-transferred outbreaks.

More information

Abalone are farmed on land, or at sea in cages or racks suspended off the sea floor. Farms generally have a low impact on their surrounding environment as operations are generally small with low amounts of waste.

In recent years, diseases transferred from farmed abalone to wild populations have caused concern, particularly in Victoria. Diseases reduced wild populations to an overfished state. Following a series of outbreaks, farms now closely monitor for any signs of disease, and farms are de-stocked if disease is detected. Strict controls on disease management now protect wild abalone from farm-transferred outbreaks.

Abalone are herbivorous, and are fed diets based on seaweeds. The types of algae harvested to feed farmed abalone are quick-growing, and studies have shown that their harvest has no effect on wild algae populations.