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Bergqvist, Jenny, 2010. Aquaculture : animal welfare, the environment, and ethical implications. First cycle, G2E. Skara: SLU, Dept. of Animal Environment and Health



The aim of this review is to assess the ethical implications of aquaculture, regarding fish welfare and environmental aspects. The aquaculture industry has grown substantially the last decades, both as a result of the over-fishing of wild fish populations, and because of the increasing consumer demand for fish meat. As the industry is growing, a significant amount of research on the subject is being conducted, monitoring the effects of aquaculture on the environment and on animal welfare. The areas of concern when it comes to animal welfare have here been divided into four different stages: breeding period; growth period; capturing and handling; and slaughter. Besides these stages, this report includes a chapter on the current evidence of fish sentience, since this issue is still being debated among biologists. Although the existence of fish sentience is still debated, most biologists are at present acknowledging the probability of fish being sentient creatures of welfare concern. Current aquaculture practices are affecting fish welfare during all four of these stages, both on physical and mental levels, as well as on the ability of fish to carry out natural behaviours. The effect fish farming has on the environment is here separated into five different categories: the decline of wild fish populations; waste and chemical discharge; loss of habitat; spreading of diseases; and invasion of exotic organisms. There is evidence of severe negative effects on the environment when looking at these five categories, even when considering the difficulty of studying environmental effects, due to the closely interacting variables.

Main title:Aquaculture
Subtitle:animal welfare, the environment, and ethical implications
Authors:Bergqvist, Jenny
Supervisor:Gunnarsson, Stefan
Examiner:Blokhuis, Harry
Series:Studentarbete / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för husdjurens miljö och hälsa
Volume/Sequential designation:313
Year of Publication:2010
Level and depth descriptor:First cycle, G2E
Student's programme affiliation:VK002 Ethology and Animal Welfare - Bachelor's Programme 180 HEC
Supervising department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Environment and Health
Keywords:Aquaculture, Ethics, Animal welfare, Environmental impact, Fish sentience
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Aquaculture production
Animal husbandry
Deposited On:01 Jul 2010 12:20
Metadata Last Modified:20 Apr 2012 14:14

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