Aquaculture, or farming the water, produces a variety of finfish and shellfish, including hybrid striped bass, tilapia, catfish, crawfish, trout, oysters, and soft crabs. Aquaculture also supplies ornamental aquatic plants and fish, game fish, bait, and some specimens for laboratory research. The wholesale value of aquafarm-raised products in the State totaled nearly $19.3 million in 1996.

Since 1988, when Maryland's first aquaculture legislation was passed, most aquafarmed products have been grown in ponds. Now, however, a new intensive aquaculture uses recirculating tanks. This technology makes farm-raised fish available year-round. Aquaculturally produced fish are exempt from laws and regulations that pertain to wild harvested species, including endangered species provisions.

Aquaculture is a concern of the Aquaculture Development and Seafood Marketing section of the Department of Agriculture.

Maryland at a Glance

Maryland Manual On-Line

 Maryland Manual On-Line, 1998

July 10, 1998   
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