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Safeguarding the Welfare of Fish in Aquaculture : Physiological Assessments of Stress and Welfare During Handling, Transport and Slaughter

Hjelmstedt, Per (2022). Safeguarding the Welfare of Fish in Aquaculture : Physiological Assessments of Stress and Welfare During Handling, Transport and Slaughter. Diss. (sammanfattning/summary) Sveriges lantbruksuniv., Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae, 1652-6880
ISBN 978-91-7760-903-2
eISBN 978-91-7760-904-9
[Doctoral thesis]

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Abstract

The increased demand of fish for human consumption has led to a rapid expansion of aquaculture. However, there are major knowledge gaps regarding species-specific needs, which entails an increased risk that fish are exposed to various aquaculture practices that have negative effects on their welfare. The purpose of this thesis has been to gain knowledge that can be used to assess the welfare of fish in aquaculture. To do so I have investigated various physiological indicators of fish welfare during handling, transport, and slaughter. First, the long-term effect of implantation of a heart rate bio-logger in the rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) was investigated. I found no indications of impaired health three weeks after surgery, and concluded that these individuals can be assumed to represent a healthy population. The same type of bio-logger was then used, in combination with other biochemical stress indicators, to investigate the effect of repeated stress from handling, transport and slaughter in European whitefish (Coregonus lavaretus). The results clearly showed that the animals were stressed during crowding and brailing prior to transportation and during subsequent stunning before killing. To evaluate the reliability of a range of practical visual indicators of unconsciousness, measurements of Electroencephalogram was used, where changes in brain activity of rainbow trout before and after stunning with carbon dioxide, bolt-gun and electricity were investigated. Unfortunately, the result showed that the practical visual indicators used to assess unconsciousness was in poor agreement with the assessment based on brain activity. In summary, several important findings are presented here that can be used to improve fish welfare in aquaculture, and which can form the basis for future regulations and general advice on how fish should be handled, kept, cared for, and stunned and killed.

Authors/Creators:Hjelmstedt, Per
Title:Safeguarding the Welfare of Fish in Aquaculture : Physiological Assessments of Stress and Welfare During Handling, Transport and Slaughter
Series Name/Journal:Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae
Year of publishing :2022
Number:2022:14
Number of Pages:104
Publisher:Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
ISBN for printed version:978-91-7760-903-2
ISBN for electronic version:978-91-7760-904-9
ISSN:1652-6880
Language:English
Publication Type:Doctoral thesis
Article category:Other scientific
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 4 Agricultural Sciences > 401 Agricultural, Forestry and Fisheries > Fish and Aquacultural Science
(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 4 Agricultural Sciences > 402 Animal and Dairy Science > Animal and Dairy Science.
Keywords:EEG, stress, rainbow trout, European whitefish, stunning, cortisol, heart rate
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-115904
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-115904
ID Code:27091
Faculty:VH - Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science
Department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Environment and Health
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:14 Feb 2022 13:03
Metadata Last Modified:14 Feb 2022 13:11

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