Shrimp Probiotics

Biosecurity involves following strict management protocols to prevent specific pathogens from entering a system or reducing the numbers. A good understanding of pathogen reservoirs is important. Quarantine, sanitation and disinfection are all important components of biosecurity.

Quarantine, defined as the isolation of an organism or group of organisms to prevent the introduction or spread of infectious disease, is a standard procedure that is extremely important in aquaculture. In practical terms, quarantine is a standard set of procedures that should be observed to prevent the introduction of pathogens or diseases into a population of fish, prawn and shrimp in aquaculture. The quarantine protocols should be strictly adhered and should follow as many of the following protocols as are practical:

  • testing of a sample of shrimp, prawn and fish prior to bringing them onto the facility.
  • all-in, all-out stocking procedures.
  • isolation or separation from other populations for a period of time (depending upon species,
  • diseases of concern, the system)
  • feeding observation and diet adjustment.
  • sampling and proper treatment.
  • reduction or elimination of infectious pathogens.
  • disease prevention strategies.

Sanitation and Disinfection, Good sanitation and disinfection procedures reduce the numbers of disease causing organisms present within a given system and prevent or reduce the spread of disease causing organisms from one system to another.

Recommended Sanitation and Disinfection Protocols to prevent or reduce the pathogen load in a system include:

  • be careful with live foods, although live or fresh foods can be a good source of nutrients, these may also be a source of pathogens.
  • ensure proper storage(in a cool, dry location) and usage (fallow manufacturers recommendations/expiration date) of manufactured feeds to prevent loss of nutrients and build up of pathogens or toxins.

Good overall system maintenance and cleanliness to reduce environments that will favour pathogens and parasites

  • good husbandry (such as nutrition, water and soil quality etc).
  • regular monitoring of excess organic matter and control strategies.
  • backwash and treatment of filters as needed to reduce organic loading in hatcheries.
  • washing and disinfection of air and water pumps and lines in hatcheries.
  • flush sediment out of water lines as needed and disinfect them.
  • maintain proper sanitation disinfection strategies.
  • keep nets and other equipment off the floor to control contamination and keep them sterile.
  • Pull dead and moribund culture organisms as soon as possible and dispose of appropriately.
  • Avoid cross contamination of equipment or water from one system to another.
  • Use disinfectants for equipment including nets and foot-baths (placed at strategic locations around the facility, e.g., at the entrance and exit of quarantine buildings, hatcheries, farms and other systems)

Bio security Programme for Shrimp Production Sector:

The major implementation of any bio security measures is always going to be in the hatcheries and in the growing ponds. However, besides good management practices and treatments in hatcheries and ponds there are bio-security measures which should be put into place:

1. Identify all vectors that can transmit disease from one place to another. Man is a major source of contamination. Anybody working with shrimp in several ponds should wash his/her hands, legs and feet with proper disinfection solutions, after handling equipment or animals and before moving to work on the next pond. Other vectors of disease transmission include crabs, rodents wild birds etc. which can contaminate the water in ponds. These vectors should be kept in control completely in the vicinity of aquaculture practices.

2. Do not share equipment between ponds unless necessary. In these cases, disinfect all equipment prior to being re-used.

3. Ensure that the site is limited to one combined entrance and exit to establish a secure Biosecurity perimeter. Restrict access to the hatcheries and farms to authorized persons only.

4. Ensure that all vehicles have been cleaned and disinfected prior to arrival at site.

5. Keep clean all surrounding areas of the hatchery or farm. After cleansing disinfect all surrounding areas of the hatchery or farm.

6. Thoroughly clean all equipment such as sampling tubs, trays, nets etc., rinse with clean water and then disinfect.

Problem-Solving Approaches

Strictly adhering to the principles of bio-security and good husbandry management will prevent many disease outbreaks. However, problems that may lead to disease will arise even in the best-managed systems and a scientific and methodical approach will help determine the best course of action, reduce losses and get the system and shrimp back to normal. Record keeping is an important tool in this approach.

Problems may or may not result in diseased shrimp or fish. The key to preventing disease and reducing losses is early detection of any abnormalities in the system or the shrimp/fish. Early detection relies on daily monitoring of water quality, general system checks and observing shrimp/fish behavior, shrimp/fish appearance and mortalities. Optimal water quality should be determined for the species being held as it may vary among species, life stages or systems.

Biological Products

Health Diagnosis

Some early warning signs of disease in a population of shrimp, prawn or fish include changes in behaviour or appearance, reduced or absent feeding response, as well as increases in morbidity (sick once) and moribund (mortality). In many cases, two or more factors, such as changes in water quality, handling, parasites or bacteria, will have contributed to the disease outbreak and each must be corrected.

Records of water quality and management actions should be reviewed for early warning and any problems should be corrected. Nutritional programs should be examined for completeness (this will vary depending upon the species requirements and life stage) and storage of feeds should be evaluated to ensure feeds are stored properly (cool temperatures, low humidity and for minimal periods).

Shrimp, prawn and fish should be evaluated, preferably with the assistance of a health specialist.Early warnings will include behavioral changes, lack of feeding and any obvious external signs of disease (e.g., white spots, hemorrhages, vibriosis, or presence of protozoa or fungi). A representative sample of sick shrimp, prawn and fish should be sacrificed for necropsies. Necropsies should include examination of all tissues for appearance and presence of abnormalities; search for external and internal parasites; microbiological culture of pertinent organs; histopathology; and virology, if warranted. Any necessary treatments should then be based on findings from all pertinent tests.

Knowledge of how treatments affect the system is also important. Their proper use in aquaculture systems should be understood and all relevant issues should be determined prior to their use. Work with knowledgeable aquaculture specialists prior to starting aquaculture venture. Such efforts will maximise the chances of success.

Designs and components of biosecurity systems continue to be upgraded and streamlined, but basic management principles remain unchanged. Preventative medicine is critical. Preventative medicine includes proper attention to species biology, genetics, water quality, nutrition, system design, quarantine, sanitation, disinfection and overall management. An understanding of common diseases is also important. Common infectious and non-infectious diseases will vary from one species to another.

It is of primary importance to understand the serious implications of not implementing biosecurity strategies, quantitative assessment of risks, constant surveillance and detailed record keeping. This is particularly important in our aquaculture operation systems where predators, scavengers and poachers can pose serious threats in the transportation of pathogenic viruses, bacteria, protozoa, fungi etc. from one site to another.