This study assessed different substrata for M. pyrifera settlement sporophytes in a hatchers, and assessed success in the field for repopulating natural populations. Repopulation is proposed in order to help recover exploited forests of M. pyrifera. It is also an opportunity for market diversification for artisanal fishermen and small entrepreneurs in the south of Chile where this kelp is harvested as feed for abalone farms.
Site Selection Criteria:
Two sites were selected for transplantation; one with Macrocystis pyrifera forest and one without. Each site was approximately 10m2, with the same oceanographic conditions.
Cause Of Decline:
In Chile, commercial harvesting of brown algae is increasing and signs of over-exploitation of kelp forests have been detected. The main driving force behind brown algal demand in Chile has been for alginate and for Macrocystis pyrifera as feed for abalone farming. Therefore, there is a need to develop techniques to repopulate sites in which the algae has disappeared or decreased due to either anthropogenic causes or natural catastrophe, such as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation.
, Vol. 57., Botanica Marinahttps://doi.org/10.1515/bot-2014-0005