Mariculture or marine farming is a specialized branch of aquaculture (which includes freshwater aquaculture) involving the cultivation of marine organisms for food and other animal products, in enclosed sections of the open ocean (offshore mariculture), fish farms built on littoral waters (inshore mariculture), or in artificial tanks, ponds or raceways which are filled with seawater (onshore mariculture). An example of the latter is the farming of marine fish, including finfish and shellfish like prawns, or oysters and seaweed in saltwater ponds. Non-food products produced by mariculture include: fish meal, nutrient agar, jewellery (e.g. cultured pearls), and cosmetics.
Similar to algae cultivation, shellfish can be farmed in multiple ways: on ropes, in bags or cages, or directly on (or within) the intertidal substrate. Shellfish mariculture does not require feed or fertilizer inputs, nor insecticides or antibiotics,