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Working for a healthier aquaculture at Lake Titicaca


At present, aquaculture at Lake Titicaca is based on rainbow trout fed with small fish that are caught from the lake. This is a non-sustainable situation because 1) trout is an invasive species and is disturbing the valuable ecosystem of the lake, 2) indigenous small fish are on the decline due to the inefficient feeding strategy, 3) trout - as carnivorous species - accumulates more mercury from the polluted lake, making it a threat for human health, and 4) the consumption of only fish filet has an imbalanced nutrient profile. This project's research will allow the development of aquaculture based on Orestias, a small indigenous fish species. This will 1) decrease the pressure of trout as invasive species, 2) avoid wild-catch from the lake, 3) reduce human mercury intake because it is expected that mercury pollution is lower from fish fed with plant-based diets, 4) the consumption of whole fish has a much better nutritional profile for human consumption (omega-3, trace elements, vitamins), and 5) reintroduction of native species is supported. Evidently, this research cooperation will lead to local capacity building.

Intervention type

TEAM projects


01/01/2019 - 31/12/2022

This project is being implemented in:
Flemish promoter Geert Janssens
Local promoter Ruben Marin
Local partner institution Universiteit Gent
visit www.ugent.be
Local partner institution Universidad Mayor de San Andrés
visit http://www.umsa.bo
Other Flemish Partners KU Leuven
visit www.kuleuven.be
Other local partners Universidad Pública de El Alto
Budget € 177.548