Department of Education

Animal Ethics

Animal Ethics

Animal Ethics ‹ Animal Use Decisions

Animal Use Decisions


The use of fish and crustaceans in teaching and research

It is important for all teachers and researchers to understand that any use of any animal for scientific purposes requires the user to comply with the relevant laws.

A scientific teaching activity may be defined as: "any action or group of actions undertaken with the aim of achieving a scientific purpose, where the scientific purpose is imparting or demonstrating knowledge or techniques to achieve
an educational outcome in science, as specified in the relevant curriculum or competency requirements.” (See the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes, 8th Edition, 2014 – the “Code”).

Definition of animal

Any live non-human vertebrate, that is, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals, encompassing domestic animals, purpose-bred animals, livestock, wildlife, and also cephalopods such as octopus and squid. (See the Australian Code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes, 8th Edition, 2014).

Fish

Some confusion has existed about the use of fish for scientific purposes and it is necessary to examine several inter-related pieces of legislation to understand the requirements for the use of fish.

In summary, teachers and researchers must comply with the laws governing the use of fish, just as they do for other animals. Thus, the Code applies and teachers and researchers have no exemption from the Acts and Regulations for the use of fish.

Crustaceans

Some uncertainty has existed about the use of crustaceans for scientific purposes and is it again necessary to examine the inter-related pieces of legislation to understand the requirements for the use of crustaceans and other invertebrates.

While teachers are not required to report to the SAEC in relation to crustaceans, teachers and researchers must still comply with the laws governing the use of crustaceans, just as they do for other animals. Neither the Animal Welfare Act 2002 nor the Code applies directly to crustaceans, but teachers and researchers have no exemption from other Acts and Regulations for the use of crustaceans.  Other legislation that does apply includes the Fish Resources Management Act 1994, the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 and their associated regulations.

Animal Use Decisions
http://det.wa.edu.au/curriculumsupport/animalethics/detcms/navigation/animal-use-decisions/?page=5&tab=Main

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