A new generation of salmon is on the way

Egg-Update-logoNr. 3 / August 2016


The first sea-reared broodfish that comprise the origin of a new generation of salmon eggs have been stripped at AquaGen. This is a generation better adapted to the challenges currently facing the industry, and eggs will be ready for delivery from the beginning of October 2016. 

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Figure1. Eggs from female salmon with specific attributes being fertilized with milt from precisely selected male salmon.

More mature broodfish early

From broodfish that have lived their whole lifecycle on land, there has been a successful and closely controlled production of so called “off season” eggs with great results. Approximately 20 million eggs will be delivered in the third quarter to farmers in Norway and Scotland from this production.

While “off season” eggs are transported to the hatcheries, the traditional early egg production of 2016/2017 season eggs has begun. Stripping of the first broodfish reared in the sea was conducted on 22nd August 2016 at both AquaGen Hemne and AquaGen Steigen (Figure 1). Stripping happened at around the same time as last season, however, this year more mature fish at both sites have been reported. This will produce greater amounts of eggs that can be delivered as early as week 41 and, as a result, AquaGen will be able to deliver eggs all year round from Norwegian broodstock sites (Figure 2). Increased flexibility and improved utilization of capacity in smolt production will be possible, at the same time as that optimal production of early S0 and large smolt will no longer be limited by the availability of eggs.

Figure 2. Timing of salmon egg deliveries throughout the year based on broodfish that are produced in different environments. Eggs from land based broodfish reared in tanks are delivered from July up to and including September. Eggs from sea based broodfish reared in cages are delivered from October up to and including July. A new salmon generation starts with land based egg deliveries in July.

Production of large smolt

In order to have the best starting point for production of large smolt, it is an advantage to take in the eggs early. A large smolt with high growth potential will lead to a significantly reduced production time in the sea. Fast growth in both freshwater and seawater is generally strongly emphasized in the whole of AquaGen’s breeding material this season too. This very best genetic material that AquaGen offers combines these attributes with selection for lice resistance and handling tolerance.

New products

Beginning this season, AquaGen’s product portfolio has developed with new, more sophisticated products that are adapted to the challenges facing the industry today. This places greater demands for the planning and logistics process connected to the testing and selection of broodfish, together with the production and distribution of eggs. We produce eggs to order and it takes a minimum of 7 weeks from the eggs are being fertilized until they are ready to be dispatched. To accommodate the egg orders in terms of quality, quantity and delivery time, we urge our customers to place the orders as early as possible and at the latest 10 weeks before desired delivery. Please see our product overview for 2016/2017 here.