Project number: 2005-209
Project Status:
Budget expenditure: $205,514.03
Principal Investigator: Ray Tynan
Organisation: Select Oyster Company Pty Ltd
Project start/end date: 29 Jun 2005 - 1 Feb 2008


The success of FRDC supported breeding and hatchery production programs has demonstrated to industry that faster growing disease resistant oysters can be bred and distributed. Industry has now established a company, SOCo, to accept responsibility for the management, future development and distribution of the SRO breeding lines. Initially the company undertook management and coordination of the sales of faster growing seed and now wishes to expand its role to determine the future of the breeding program. To ensure the successful adoption of technology, a previous FRDC review of oyster hatchery and breeding programs (Benzie et al., FRDC 2001/213) strongly emphasised the need to inform, equip, and assist industry to understand and adopt this technology. Accordingly, there is a need to 1) conduct an independent assessment of current selection practices and their relevance to ongoing breeding line maintenance and improvement, 2) establish the genetic status of the current breeding lines with respect to the natural populations of SRO and 3) assist in the development of cost effective strategies and technology for the maintenance of selected lines and their genetic integrity. The outcomes of these assessments need to be presented in a form that is suitable for incorporation in the company’s business plan and that would be of value to other industries undertaking or contemplating breeding programs.


1. To survey industry breeding requirements and establish the economic values of different SRO traits in order to determine the market sustainability of developing and marketing multiple lines and to determine the optimum breeding objectives of different lines.
2. To evaluate alternative methods for selection for the most desirable traits, as identified by industry (faster growth, QX, disease resistance, winter mortality resistance etc).
3. To review breeding program designs and apply the best approach to develop a new 10 year breeding strategy for SRO, in consultation with industry.
4. To develop a risk assessment and reduction model against the loss of broodstock.
5. To determine the best methods for use and protection of existing & future intellectual property for industry development.
6. To prepare a technical manual for the continued operation of an SRO breeding program.
7. To prepare fully costed options for funding a breeding program for the next 10 years.
8. Review the genetic status of the current breeding lines by examining genetic variation.

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