New FLUPSY platform to support Albany’s shellfish aquaculture

An innovative sea-based floating nursery has been launched in Albany as a new tool to help boost shellfish aquaculture production in the region.

Officially known as a FLoating UPweller SYstem, but colloquially called a FLUPSY, the floating platform uses pumps to generate an upward current of sea water which passes through mesh pots containing shellfish seed, which can then feed on food particles and phytoplankton floating in the water.

The WA Government has provided $125,000 through the WA Recovery Plan to install two FLUPSYs, with one located in Albany and a second later this year in the Perth metropolitan area that will be support a saucer scallop nursery.

When located and operated correctly, the FLUPSYs can provide a sustainable and efficient nursery environment for shellfish, without the need for supplementary foods.

The system built by DPIRD is one of the first large scale FLUPSYs in Australia, with a production capacity estimated at 5-10 million 5mm rock oyster seed per year.

The new FLUPSY platforms will be located in Albany and Perth to support aquaculture nursery developments.