What the heck is a “lumpsucker fish? What are they good for?

I’m in New York, on my way to attend Aquavet II. Today I met with, and spent a whole day with an aspiring fish veterinarian from Norway, Toni Erkinharju. He is in his final year of veterinary school.

We exchanged our notes on what’s happening in the world of fishes in our respective countries. The topic that caught my interest the most is on their research into biological control of sea lice in farmed Atlantic salmon.

They’re putting a lot of work into ballan wrasse and lumpsucker fish to act as “cleaner fish”, to remove the live from the farmed salmon. Small wrasses are well known when it comes to removing ectoparasites from larger fish. But what the heck is a lumpsucker fish? What a peculiar name!

The researchers found that the wrasses were only effective during the warmer months and that they needed cleaner fish all year round, especially in autumn and spring time. The lumpsucker fish were identified as the perfect candidate!

Check out this link, provided by Toni, to find out more about the lumpsucker’s biology and what they look like:

http://www.imr.no/temasider/fisk/rognkjeks_-kall/46631/en

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