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FA COST Action 867
Welfare of fish in european aquaculture

The main objective of this COST Action is to improve the knowledge on welfare of fish and

formulate a set of guidelines embodying a common and scientifically sound understanding of

the concept of welfare in farmed fish and to construct a range of targeted operational welfare

indicator protocols to be used in the industry.

The Action will focus principally upon the five main farmed species in Europe, namely salmon,

rainbow trout, sea bass, sea bream and carp. The outcomes of the Action are also expected to

have direct implications for welfare concepts in the use of experimental animals, keeping of

ornamental fish, and for wild fisheries.

Secondary objectives

1. Evaluation of existing knowledge generated from fundamental fish biology research for

its relevance from a welfare and comparative species perspective (WG1).

2. The use of expertise from within the consortium, to define techniques and systems for

validating specific aspects of welfare and operational welfare indicators using a range

of physiological, behavioural and motivational research strategies.(WG1).

3. Identification of gaps in knowledge and changing research focus to ensure that studies

do not concentrate only upon avoidance of negative welfare but also involve research

describing positive welfare indicators and targeting physiological balance and

wellbeing of the animal (WG1).

4. Description and definition of nutritional, health, behavioural and environmental

parameters from a welfare perspective (WG2).

5. Description and definition of management protocols that promote good welfare at a

farm level (WG2).

6. Use of expertise from within the consortium, to create a series of Operational Welfare

Indicator (OWI) matrices for the five main farmed species of European aquaculture

based on existing and new knowledge (WG2).

7. Identification of experimental methods and existing but underutilised data sets that can

be used for evaluating/simulating management systems, including systems associated

with different species, farming systems, life stages and environmental


8. Provision of information to inform the fish welfare debate and help develop legislation

and legislative processes related to fish welfare, through meetings, reports,

publications and co-organisation of international conferences and workshops (WG3).

9. Description of the present state of welfare-directed activity of participating countries

and formulation of country specific advice/activities (WG3).

10. Formulation of activities/advice as to how best to promote the transition from systems

based upon purely technical solutions to systems based upon realising the biological

production potential of the animal (WG3).

11. Facilitation of communication between ongoing initiatives at a national and

international level with particular emphasis upon the promotion of links with relevant

activities in terrestrial farmed animals and activities aimed at understanding the

consumer impact on future animal production.

12. Facilitation of knowledge transfer and training through short scientific missions

between established and new research groups. Interaction along North-South and

West-East geographic axes will be encouraged.

(Descriptions are provided by the Actions directly via e-COST.)

General Information*

Chair of the Action:

Prof Anders KIESSLING (SE)

Vice Chair of the Action:

Prof Marco SAROGLIA (IT)

Science officer of the Action:


Administrative officer of the Action:

Ms Jeannette NCHUNG ORU


Action Fact Sheet

Download AFS as .RTF

Memorandum of Understanding

Download MoU as PDF

Progress Report

Download Progress Report as PDF

Final Report

Download Final Report as PDF


Download Poster as PDF


Action website:

* content provided by e-COST.
Data is synchronised once per night.


Last updated: 02 May 2011 top of page