Potential aquaculture areas assessed through unmanned aircraft equipment

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By Analia Murias

The National Fisheries Institute (Inapesca), under the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food (Sagarpa), will have three unmanned aircraft pieces of equipment in order to obtain information on areas that are suitable for aquaculture development in the country.

Information on the qualities of aquaculture resources will be gathered and updated profiles of the ocean currents will be obtained.

It is expected that the gathered data will be used for the design of strategies to further encourage aquaculture activity in the coastal areas of the Pacific and Gulf of Mexico, and in inland water areas (lakes and ponds, including other water bodies).

Through the unmanned aircraft equipment, it is expected to measure the chemical, physical and microbiological water variables, such as temperature, chlorophyll, oxygen and algal blooms as well as the salinity, among other parameters.
These unmanned vehicles have a high resolution camera, which allows the tracing of characterizations of marine and coastal environments and their ecologically productive capacity.
These vehicles will also help to determine the shape and area of coastal and inland water bodies.
And they will also favour the development of studies in agricultural areas of difficult access in order to obtain valuable information to define surface types, harvest status and the detection of potentially productive areas.

All the information that will be obtained will be included in a database and in an image catalog.

Inapesca researchers from the National Institute of Forestry, Agriculture and Livestock (Inifap), under the Agricultural and Fisheries Information Service (SIAP) and the Navy, among others, may use this information.

The early studies provided include the sea cucumber from Yucatan, the yellow turtle and shrimp farms, Sagarpa reported in a press release.

“To operate these vehicles, theoretical and practical training workshops will be performed for Inapesca specialists, who will participate in the implementation of research on water bodies and the continent,” it was concluded.

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