Agile training to help enable standardisation of phytoplankton sampling and gross gill terminology across the Scottish sector

Janina Costa*, Jillian Couto-Phoenix, AS Boerlage, MET Thomson, Ronnie Soutar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

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Current aquaculture operations in the UK are dominated by finfish farming in Scotland, contributing over £1.8 billion to the Scottish economy with the ambition to double this value by 2030. Finfish health is the top priority across the sector as healthy fish enjoy higher survival rates. One of the most important threats is the occurrence of gill disease, e.g. due to HABs, with potentially devastating impacts on fish health resulting in mortality, reduced welfare, and associated losses in profit on the rise. To understand this threat better, high-quality data generation for reporting is essential. For example, a significant body of work – catalysed by the Scottish Government’s Farmed Fish Health Framework and involving SAIC, agencies, regulators, and a large representation from producers within the sector – acknowledged the need for procedures for sustained and standardised surveillance and reporting of algal blooms, and a standardised operating procedure was developed. The sector representatives are unanimous in the need for developing specific skills to operate under the HABs SOP and in fish health generally. Two courses have been funded by Defra, UK, in the area of aquaculture operators’ skills development. The first course aims for standardisation of HABs sampling and classification, and understanding of the data and modelling associated with mitigation and management of HABs events, and will be delivered through a partnership between SAIC, the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) and Lantra. The second course is under the health framework and aims to improve the skills and knowledge of technicians and veterinary professionals currently working in, or interested in diversifying into, the seafood sector. An initial aim of the latter course, a partnership between SRUC and SSF, is to standardise salmon gross gill health monitoring terminology.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPrint publication - 25 Oct 2023
EventGill Health Initiative 2023 - Oslo, Norway
Duration: 25 Oct 202326 Oct 2023


ConferenceGill Health Initiative 2023
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