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Weekly Overview: Cleaner-Fish Vaccination Project Aims to Increase Salmon Farming Sustainability

4 August 2015, at 1:00am

ANALYSIS - The Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre is co-funding a new research project which aims to develop new fish vaccination techniques for lumpfish and wrasse.

It is hoped that the research will enhance the efficacy and welfare of cleaner-fish and therefore help to deliver production growth, decreased use of medicines and improved sustainability in the salmon industry.

Professor Jimmy Turnbull, Deputy Director of the Institute of Aquaculture, added: “This project will deliver valuable new insights into cleaner-fish physiologies and welfare, and define optimal vaccination protocols for cleaner-fish species. As well as helping the industry comply with the requirements of Quality Assurance schemes, our work will support the sector’s commitment to welfare and sustainability.”

Also in Scotland, Cooke Aquaculture Scotland Ltd is expanding its operations through the acquisition of shares in Thompson Bros. Salmon Limited, a salmon farming company located on the island of Yell, Shetland.

The deal adds two farm sites to Cooke’s operations. The sites are located adjacent to Cooke’s existing facilities at Unst and Yell which are performing very well.

In fishing news, more countries have now ratified the FAO's international agreement that aims to combat illegal fishing.

Australia was the latest country to join the Port State Measures international treaty, bringing the total to 14 countries. The agreement comes into force when 25 countries have joined.

In the UK, fishermen have a new resource available to them to help them transition to the Common Fisheries Policy's (CFP) new landing obligation.

The Seafish Gear Database features over 100 gear and selectivity profiles providing information on how to reduce bycatch for a range of species.

It is hoped that the information will provide the industry with some solutions ahead of the next phase of the landing obligation which comes in to effect for demersal fisheries on 1 January 2016.

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The Health and Welfare of Atlantic Salmon course

It is vital that fish farm operatives who are responsible for farmed fish are trained in their health and welfare. This will help to ensure that fish are free from disease and suffering whilst at the same time promote good productivity and comply with legislation.

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