Marine Life Center
State-of-the-Art Marine Hatchery for Blue Crabs
The Gulf Coast Marine Life Center’s University partner, University of Maryland Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology’s Aquaculture Research Center (ARC), has unique expertise and facilities for broodstock, hatchery and juvenile production of blue crabs. ARC is a 1,800-square-meter, state-of-the-art, environmentally responsible marine core facility that operates on recirculating artificial seawater. The Gulf Coast Marine Life Center will implement and build upon their infrastructure and technologies to successfully mass-produce blue crab juveniles for stock enhancement efforts along the Gulf coast region.
Over the past 12 years, the University of Maryland has developed technologies and protocols for closing the life cycle of blue crabs in captivity; spawn females, efficiently grow larvae, producing hundreds of thousands of hatchery juvenile crabs. Using these juveniles, they developed modern and responsible strategies for blue crab stock restoration and enhancement in the Chesapeake Bay, which can be replicated along the Gulf Coast of the United States.