Carlsbad Aquaculture Research Institute, David L. Leighton, Director

                                              Welcome to

This website was established to present a number of topics related to abalone biology, ecology and culture.  Access to related subjects is facilitated by inclusion of selected links.

The shell shown above is that of a red abalone,
Haliotis rufescens.   Among the 60 +  species of abalones throughout the world, the red abalone attains the largest size.  This specimen is slightly under 8 1/2 inches, dwarfed by larger red abalone which are still to be found off the northern California coast.  The size record is 12 5/16 inches (313 mm).  This subject, embellished with vivid photographs, is treated by Buzz Owen in a soon to be published article for the magazine "Of Sea and Shore".

Those interested in more information on biology and culture of North America Pacific coast abalone species may wish to consult Leighton 2000, "The Biology and Culture of the California Abalones".  The book is available through the author at:                   at a reduced price of $44.95 plus $5.00 shipping (USA only).


Natural History
Abalone Aquaculture
Carlsbad Aquafarm
Juvenile Culture


A Guide to Rock Scallop Aquaculture.  By David L. Leighton, Carlsbad Aquaculture Research Institute

Kelp Forests from DesertsBy David L. Leighton
   An historical account of studies leading to the development of quickliming as a method to reduce densities of overgrazing sea urchins.  Kelp beds and kelp communities were restored at several locations in southern California in the 1960s.