Welcome to South Centers Matthew Smith

Matthew joined the aquaculture South Centers team as an Extension Aquaculture Specialist in March 2016.  For the last year, Matthew worked in Extension in a fish health laboratory in Lonoke, Arkansas.  He received his Master’s degree from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff in Aquaculture and Fisheries in 2015 and his Bachelor’s from Auburn University in 2012. 
 
His Master’s research focused on comparing traditional golden shiner (baitfish) culture methods to an alternative production system that has already been commercially accepted on catfish farms.  With Arkansas being such a large and diverse aquaculture industry, Matthew was exposed to a wide variety of species that are applicable to the Ohio industry.  His primary interests include pond culture and management, alternative production technologies, water quality, fish health, and overcoming hobby to commercialization barriers. 
 
As Extension Aquaculture Specialist, his number one priority is to work toward expanding sustainable and profitable fish farms in the state of Ohio.  Primary responsibilities include visiting fish farms to understand the industry’s needs, develop Extension fact sheets and workshops that will help address the needs found, conducting applied (farmer-friendly) research when necessary, and assisting those who are interested in becoming an aquaculturist.  To expedite the dissemination of information to current and potential farmers, Matthew and Sarah Strausbaugh are updating the Ohio State University South Centers Aquaculture Extension website to make it easier to navigate for those who are brand new to aquaculture.  Additionally, Matthew is working to develope extension workshops geared toward exposing OSU Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educators to the world of aquaculture so that they will be prepared when tasked with fish farming questions in the future.