Genetic progress in aquaculture: five things to drive efficient breeding programs


The following parameters have to be carefully studied to identify the most adapted strategy for a breeding program.

A breeder who wants to generate genetic progress must select future broodstock among candidates.

The objective of a breeder is to get an accurate estimate of the broodstock genetic values. He can do it by chosing a type of selection and the size of the families.

Among candidates, a breeder will select the best of the best as future broodstock. If all the individuals have the same performance (i.e. there is no variation), this task will be hard! Ideally, the performance of the future broodstock should be far better than the mean of the population.

Understand the heritabilities of targeted traits is the very first step. It will indicate if the transmission of the trait is based on genetics or not. Traits with high heritability (>0.5) will allow rapid progress. Traits with low heritability will require specific strategies to get progress.