The Genetics and Biodiversity Programme supports member states to improve scientific knowledge of aquatic genetic resources and to guide strategic planning in their management. The programme addresses both the conservation aspects of genetic resources and their responsible usage in aquaculture to minimise impacts on biodiversity and wild strains and to assist members to meet their obligations under international treaties.
The programme promotes international linkages between member states, capacity building, research programs to develop improved strains of finfish and shellfish, genetic characterisation of existing strains, adoption of new genetic tools and technologies and consortia regional programmes to address common issues, species and strains of value from conservation and/or aquaculture perspectives.
Key activities of the programme include:
Building capacity in aquatic genetic resource management and application of new molecular technologies, tools and strategies.
Characterising aquatic genetic resources to discover species, stocks and valuable genomic resources.
Facilitating national and regional programs for domestication, genetic improvement and conservation.
Applying conservation aquaculture models to support diversification, fishery enhancement and in-situ conservation of indigenous fish species.
Facilitating responsible exchange of germplasm, safe propagation and access-benefit sharing.
Cooperation with the Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation; Global Conference on Aquaculture 2020 update; Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Report, January-March 2019; A fresh look at inland ﬁsheries and their role in food security and livelihoods; Tuskﬁsh 2 Beta: Testers wanted; APAARI Regional Workshop on Underutilized Fish and Marine Genetic Resources and Their Amelioration; Joint Research Project on Utilization of Thailand Local Genetic Resources to Develop Novel Farmed Fish for Global Market; Impacts of climate change on ﬁsheries and aquaculture.
30th NACA Governing Council Meeting, China; Dr Huang Jie elected as the next Director General of NACA; Expert Consultation on Genetically Responsible Aquaculture; Launch of AGRISI: Aquatic Genetic Resource System of India; Aquatic animal epidemiology training course held at NBFGR; Asia-Pacific Laboratory Proficiency Testing Workshop; Proceedings of the FishAdapt Conference; Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Report, July-September 2018; Centex Shrimp International Training Course on Biology and Pathology of Penaeid Shrimp; INFOFISH World Shrimp Trade Conference and Exposition.
AGRISI, a new information system on aquatic genetic resources of India, has been launched by the National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources. AGRISI is a unique platform presently covering 3138 native fish species of India. The system provides information on systematics, biology, distribution, nutrition, nutrition, and other characteristics. AGRISI includes information on museum specimens, and accessions from different NBFGR repositories. These include data on germplasm, cell lines and links to other molecular resources developed under the National Agricultural Bioinformatics Grid such as the Fish Barcode Information System.
A Regional Expert Consultation on Genetically Responsible Aquaculture was convened by the ICAR National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources and NACA, from 26-27 February. The immediate objective of the consultation was to discuss mechanisms for establishing quality seed production systems to improve hatchery and on-farm genetic diversity. A long-range objective is to establish networks of registered broodstock holdings. Linked via IT systems, such networks will form a virtual global aquaculture gene pool that can, collectively, sustain high genetic diversity and adaptive capacity, while checking inbreeding depression.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that apple snails were first introduced into Timor-Leste as food by migrants, although there is no exact information on when this occurred. The first reported damages to rice crops from the snails was around 1985 in the south and west. There is an urgent need for systematic surveys on the areas invaded and the rice crop losses. Synthetic molluscicide formulations are used to control snail populations, along with a variety of non-chemical management interventions.
The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and NACA will convene the consultation from 26-27 February 2019. The consultation will be hosted by the ICAR National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources (NBFGR) in Lucknow, India. The aim of the consultation is to find ways to assure genetic quality in seed production systems. Experts will discuss broodstock management and mechanisms to verify seed origin and quality. The goal is to empower farmers and monitoring agencies with provision of quantifiable standards.
FAO and NACA have signed an agreement to convene a global conference on aquaculture in 2020. This will be the fourth conference in a series that began at the dawn of the industry in Kyoto, 1976. Aquaculture 2020 will be held late in the year in China. Arrangements, programme and partner details will be announced via the NACA website in due course.
An Expert Consultation on Invasive Alien Fish Species: Need for a Risk Benefit Assessment and Management Framework for Healthy Freshwater Systems will be organised on 19 December 2018 in New Delhi, India. The consultation will flag the need for an equilibrium between access to non-native germplasm and the minimisation of risk to ecosystems and native fish diversity from such introductions. As a major outcome, an objective tool is expected to be developed, which can be used to evaluate prospective introductions and support decision making.
Aquaculture has seen spectacular growth in recent years, and Aqua 2018 celebrated aquaculture’s role as one of the most important food industries worldwide. Held 25-29 August in Montpellier, France, Aqua 2018 brought together scientists, practitioners, students, industry and civil society to highlight the latest global developments in aquaculture research and innovation.
This short research note provides insights on the invasive apple snails (Pomacea spp.) and rice cultivation in Brunei Darussalam. This freshwater invasive snail was first detected in 2009, but it was never introduced intentionally. Since then their population has increased swiftly and spread to almost all the rice areas across the country, becoming a major pest of irrigated transplanted rice. Research and collaboration among infested countries is important for accurate species identification and better understanding of the invasion pathways.