Broodstock and hatcheries
There are 18 professional hatcheries in Brazil. Some bigger farmers like Potiporá have their own hatchery. Broodstock is kept in big recirculating tanks of about 20,000 liters. In each tank there are between 80 and 100 mature shrimps, of which 50% is male and 50% is female. Light and temperature in the tanks are controlled and the water is aerated continuously. The shrimps are fed 6 times during the day and every day around 10-12% of the female shrimps have eggs. These shrimps are being selected and brought to separated ‘de-egging’ tanks. After 5 to 6 hours, the eggs are being removed, cleaned, treated against bacteria’s and diseases and stocked in big plastic boxes with constant aeration. After hatching, the larvae are put in incubators. The larvae stay in the incubator for about 18-20 days, which is constantly controlled on temperature, oxygen levels, ammonia, nitrite, pH, etc. In the last stage, the larvae are fed with microalgae, Artemia salina and micro pellets. When they reach the size of 10 pieces per gram, having had a mortality rate of about 30-40%, they are being conditioned in plastic bags or polystyrene boxes with water, oxygen and Artemia salina and transported by truck or air to the farms.