FL - Florida researcher granted $100000 to boost shellfish aquaculture
A $100,000 grant from The Nature Conservancy (TNC) to jumpstart the shellfish aquaculture industry and water quality initiatives has been awarded to Ashley Smyth, an assistant professor of biogeochemistry and soil and water sciences at the University of Florida (UF).
Through the grant from TNC, scientists plan to quantify the ecosystem benefits of bivalve aquaculture, specifically assessing the use of oysters and clams. Researchers also will explore how to integrate shellfish into water quality policies in Florida.
The Conservancy announced the grant recipients this month as part of the new Supporting Oyster Aquaculture and Restoration (SOAR) Shellfish Growers Resiliency Fund. Shellfish like clams and oysters can help restore ocean health and support economic development and food production in coastal communities worldwide.
“The grant will help pave the way for shellfish aquaculture in Florida,” said Ashley Smyth, an assistant professor of biogeochemistry and soil and water sciences at UF Tropical Research and Education Center in Homestead, Florida.