Economic Assessment of the Production of Native Shrimp Species as an Alternative to Supply Demand of the Live Bait Industry in the Southeast USA
Type of Degreedissertation
Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures
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The recreational fishing industry of the Gulf of Mexico is a multi million dollar industry that positively impacts coastal communities through the creation of new jobs and revenue. Native shrimp are a popular live bait that are in high demand and are key components of a good fishing experience. The market value of bait is considered substantial but as monitoring is minimal in most states the exact value and demand for bait is not well established. Computer simulations were developed for the production of live bait shrimp in ponds and a recirculating system. The information used for the computer simulations were obtained from previous research conducted in the Claude Peteet Mariculture Center in Gulf Shores, Alabama and available literature. This study demonstrates that the production of 2 cycles of 4 to 6 gram animals with stocking densities between 50 to 70 shrimp/m² in ponds have positive net returns to land, labor and management, and show positive returns in the cash flows and income statements in a simulated 7 year period. Likewise, the production of 2 cycles of 4 to 6 gram animals with stocking densities between 30 and 50 shrimp/m³ in a recirculating system has positive net returns to land, labor and management, and show positive returns in the cash flows and income statements in a simulated 7 year period. A survey conducted in 2008 and included in this study, shows that the current supply of wild caught native live bait shrimp does not meet the customer demand, especially during the summer months of June, July and August. These gaps in the supply can be satisfied with aquaculture produced live bait shrimp.