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Mass Production Technology of SPF clamworms, the Exclusive Raw Bait of Breeding Shrimps

  • PostDate:2020-09-16

In order to breed healthy and high-quality seawater shrimp seeds, the Fisheries Research Institute, Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan has successfully developed the mass production technology of Perineresis microtodonta (commonly known as “podura”) with higher unit price, as well as P. aibuhitensis (commonly known as “caterpillar”) with better growth and output, which are used as bait for the growth of high-quality breeding shrimps. The production process follows biological safety measures and epidemic prevention specifications, in order to ensure that there are no specific pathogens that are harmful to shrimps, and to effectively construct an epidemic prevention chain during shrimp production.

The clamworm is a kind of polychaete, which is the biological bait that can most effectively promote the gonad maturity, mating, and oviposition of breeding shrimps, thus, it plays a key role in the reproduction of high-quality sea shrimp seeds. It is also a universal bait commonly used by anglers, and has a price as high as NTD 50-60 per 50g.

Sea shrimp, such as white shrimp or grass shrimp, is one of the most popular aquatic products in Taiwan. In order to cultivate healthy and high-quality shrimp seeds, it is necessary to provide a healthy and safe diet for breeding shrimps. However, the feed for breeding shrimp currently available on the market is both expensive and ineffective. Therefore, as clamworms are rich in high-level unsaturated fatty acids and have special ingredients that can meet the nutritional needs during the breeding period of the shrimps, most shrimp breeders feed them clamworms. However, 90% of the clamworms on the market are imported from Mainland China, which are usually collected from the field or from farms that pay no attention to epidemic prevention. Clamworms produced in such environments are prone to contain pathogens that harm the growth and survival of shrimps, such as leukoplakia virus, acute hepatopancreatic necrosis - vibrio parahaemolyticus, hepatopancreatic microsporidia, etc. Breeding shrimps eating clamworms with such pathogens will easily infect the shrimp seeds vertically, and the shrimp seeds will then infect other healthy shrimps horizontally after stocking, which has huge negative impact on the sea shrimp breeding industry.

In order to construct a complete epidemic prevention chain for shrimp production, specific pathogen free (SPF) biological baits for shrimps should be strictly controlled, and must be produced in an environment consistent with biological safety measures and epidemic prevention. Many foreign institutions and seed producers that have long been committed to the breeding of sea shrimps, such as the Hawaiian Institute of Oceanography and Charoen Pokphand in Thailand, are aware of the importance of providing SPF clamworms to breeding shrimps, and have departments specialized in producing such clamworms. Well-known suppliers, such as Topsy Baits in the Netherlands and Siam Sand Worm in Thailand, regularly send their clamworms for inspection, and present the SPF quarantine certificate at the time of supply, in order to ensure that the shrimp seed production at the client’s end do not have epidemic prevention loopholes.

In recent years, the Fisheries Research Institute has been vigorously promoting the epidemic prevention breeding mode of sea shrimps, and strictly controlled the safety of raw bait for breeding shrimps. At present, it has developed technology for the mass production of SPF Perineresis mictodonta and P. aibuhitensis, which are suitable for Taiwan’s climate, with an annual output of more than 5 kg per square meter, and the Fisheries Research Institute has already announced non-exclusive technology transfer authorization. Interested companies can contact the Donggang Biotechnology Research Center of Fisheries Research Institute.


Donggang Biotechnology Research Center, Fisheries Research Institute, Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan

Contact: Director Fang-Cheng Wu

Tel: (08)8325511

Contributor: Assistant Researcher, Ming-Hua Yang

Tel: (08)832-4121 Ext. 209

Figure 1. Four-month-old Perineresis mictodonta with an average weight of 0.9g

Figure 2. Four-month-old P. aibuhitensis with an average weight of 2.3g and an annual output over 5kg/m2