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The Cost Benefits of Using an ROV in Aquaculture

Rachel Doornekamp   |   January 20, 2020

Aquaculture is among the fastest growing food sectors in the world, accounting for nearly 50% of the world’s total fish population. Due to population growth and urbanization, the global demand for seafood is increasing steadily at 6.9% to 9.9% each year - a demand that can only be met by increasing aquaculture production.

As farms expand and grow, it is important that they are run in sustainable ways - both environmentally and financially. By using underwater remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and submersible cameras to stay on top of inspections, fish health and pen cleanliness operators are able to save money while efficiently and effectively supervising their farms.

Net and Mooring Inspections

Regular net and mooring inspections are crucial in fish farming. Make inspections easier and more efficient with an ROV. The DTG3 ROV provides operators with an effective way to monitor nets, lines and anchors quickly and reliably - without the need to schedule costly divers.

Pen inspections are incredibly important for monitoring regular wear and tear, maintaining cleanliness, and ensuring mooring line and anchor points are secured. By guaranteeing structural integrity, farms prevent costly escapes and are able to repair minor issues quickly before they become costly disasters.

The ease of use and quick deployment of Deep Trekker ROVs allow operators to make the most of their time. With an ROV there is no need to take time out of one’s schedule to coordinate appointments with divers for lengthy and expensive inspections.

Fish Health

Perhaps the most important piece of the aquaculture puzzle is fish health. Healthy stocks are profitable stocks. Save time and money with live feedback from an underwater ROV.

Infectious diseases among fish are the source of billions of dollars in loss annually. As prevention is better than any treatment, maintaining exceptional fish husbandry and care practices will go a long way in preventing costly diseases. Regular observation allows operators to monitor and assess the effectiveness of a variety of fish husbandry aspects including feeding processes, water conditions and fish behaviour.

Catch any symptoms early by monitoring fish behaviour with the ROV, allowing any expensive health issues to be caught and remedied in a timely fashion.

Pen Cleaning

The importance of keeping pens clean is two fold: structural integrity and fish health.

Keeping pens clean works to maintain structural soundness. Clean nets and lines are stronger and more durable. Furthermore, when pens are clean it is easier to see the effects of wear and tear, allowing operators to stay on top of pen maintenance before an escape occurs.

As mentioned above, keeping fish healthy is crucial for the financial success of a fish farm. It has been demonstrated that clean pens are one of the biggest factors in the prevention of diseases that can wipe out entire stocks. Mortalities are an unfortunate reality of fish farms. Fish mortalities can gather at the bottom of the pen and as a result do not make it to the collection system. With the mort retrieval tool operators can push mortalities into the mort pumping system or bring them to the surface for examination. Keeping pens clear of morts is vital for overall fish health and pen cleanliness.

Ensuring cleanliness with an ROV helps to keep farms financially successful by keeping both fish health and pen integrity intact.

Using an ROV to regularly inspect pens, monitor fish health and ensure cleanliness saves farms money in the long term. Check out our tips for using the DTG3 for aquaculture and the top three ROV uses in the fish farming industry to learn more. Our industry experts are always available to answer any questions you may have.