IRIDA participates in a research program with state-of-the-art research centers for Bluefin Tuna reproduction and larval rearing.
IRIDA together with BLUEFIN TUNA HELLAS and STAMATIOU, have joined forces with the Institute of Aquaculture, Hellenic Center of Marine Research (HCMR), and are collaborating in a new project titled “Reproduction of Bluefin Tuna (Thunnus thynnus) in captivity and fingerling production for growout”. The program is funded by the General Secretariat of Research and Technology, (approved, contract pending) under the Action plan for the support of groups of SMEs involved in research and technological development activities. The objectives of the program (acronym THYNNOS) are to establish a broodstock of mature bluefin tuna captured from the wild (BLUEFIN TUNA HELLAS), which will be provided with an appropriate diet to encourage reproductive maturation (IRIDA). During the natural spawning season in June-July, fish will be treated with reproductive therapies pioneered by researchers of HCMR through their involvement in European-wide research programs (REPRODOTT and SELFDOTT). The expected spawned eggs will be collected by egg collecting devices (STAMATIOU) and will be shipped to the research facilities of HCMR in Crete (AQUALABS) for the larval rearing stages. The project THYNNOS is will last for three years (2011-2013) and is expected to contribute to the European efforts for the development of the necessary expertise for the closure of the life-cycle of this unique fish, and the development of a proper aquaculture industry for Atlantic bluefin tuna independently from the wild populations.