IATTC - Achotines Laboratory



The Achotines Laboratory was inaugurated in 1985.  Early research through 1993 involved laboratory and field studies of early life stages of near-shore tropical tunas.  At-sea surveys were carried out to describe the distribution and abundance of larval tunas in the northwestern Panama Bight.  Laboratory studies were conducted to study the ageing, growth, nutrition and development of vision in early-juvenile tunas.

In 1992 IATTC scientists began collaborative work on the rearing of larval tunas with Japanese scientists in Japan.  In 1993 this research led to a joint project centered at the Achotines Laboratory, initiated by the IATTC, the Overseas Fishery Cooperation Foundation (OFCF) of Japan, and the government of the Republic of Panama.  The objective of the project was to investigate the culture and captive spawning of yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares), snapper (Lutjanidae), and corvina (Sciaenidae) in land-based tanks to provide larvae and juveniles for research purposes.  The infrastructure expansion necessary to hold yellowfin tuna broodstock and to provide cultured food items for their larvae was completed by mid-1996.  Construction of additional tanks and a concrete pier were completed by late 1999.  Between 1993 and 2001 several Japanese scientists were based at the Achotines Laboratory, working with IATTC and Panamanian scientists on spawning and rearing programs with yellowfin tuna, snapper and corvina. When the joint project concluded in 2001, the facilities and equipment installed as part of the project became the property of the Government of Panama.  In 2002 it was agreed that they would remain at the Laboratory for use by the IATTC staff in its research.




Last modified: 19 Oct 2010