The digestive tract of all vertebrates including fish is known to harbour a complex microbial ecosystem with a large, diverse and dynamic collection of microorganisms. These microbes become an integral component of the host animal with intimate host-microbe associations. In the following study, we employed both bacterial enumeration and culture independent DNA fingerprinting approach to examine the presence of host-specific gut microbiota in Indian major carps related to their occupancy of distinct ecological niches.

Rice-fish farming is a popular activity amongst the Apatani tribe of the Ziro valley, conducted in their wet rice terraces. The strains of fish cultured include mirror carp Cyprinus carpio specularis, scale carp C. carpio communis and leather carp C. carpio nudus, cultivated synchronously with local rice cultivars (Oryza sativa), viz. eamo, ampu, mipya, pyapu, pyaping and eylang. This article describes the integrated farming practices and socio-economic circumstances of the Apatani in the Yachuli, Hapoli, Hong, Hari, Hija, Bula, Dutta and Old Ziro villages.

This year’s International Training Course on the Biology and Pathology of Penaeid Shrimp will take place from 1-12 July at Centex Shrimp, Mahidol University, Bangkok. Tailored to those interested in doing shrimp research or learning about shrimp diseases, you will get to learn from the very best in the field about major and emerging shrimp diseases, shrimp farm management, gross inspection and molecular diagnosis of infectious shrimp diseases. You will have opportunities to try your hand in a series of practical sessions.

Fifty fellowships are available for young scientists and researchers under the ASEAN-India Research Training Fellowship Scheme (AIRTF), to study at Indian academic and R&D institutions. The fellowships are for a period of up to six months and include travel and financial support. The fellowships are intended to build capacity among young ASEAN researchers in science and technology and to further strengthen the bond between India and ASEAN member states.

In this issue:

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.

NACA welcomes Dr Huang Jie as the incoming Director General of NACA. He will serve a five year term beginning in May 2019. Dr Huang succeeds Dr Cherdsak Virapat, who will complete his own five-year term in April. Dr Huang was elected at the 30th Governing Council Meeting held 26-27 March in Guangzhou, China. Dr Huang, a Chinese national, obtained his BSc on virology in Wuhan University in 1987, an MSc in the Wuhan Virology Institute, Chinese Academy of Science in 1990, and his PhD on marine biology in the Ocean Institute in 2010.

The 30th Governing Council was held in Guangzhou, China, 26-27 March. 74 participants attended the Governing Council Meeting representing fifteen member governments, with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia attending as an observer. The host Government, China, was elected as Chair of the 30th Governing Council. Hong Kong SAR was elected as Vice Chair. Key outcomes included the election of Dr Huang Jie as the next Director General of NACA, and preparations for the Global Conference on Aquaculture 2020.

Climate variability and change are affecting hydro-meteorological cycles and altering aquatic ecosystems, driving shifts in physical and chemical processes, ecological communities and the distribution and abundance of species. These changes have implications for fisheries management, food security and the livelihoods of more than 600 million people worldwide. The FishAdapt conference was held in Bangkok from 8 to 10 August, 2016. It provided a forum to share practical experiences in understanding the vulnerabilities associated with climate change and ocean acidification and the development of risk management and adaptation strategies.

The theme for Shrimp 2019 is "modelling for sustainability". The conference will be held from 12-14 November in Bangkok, Thailand. The conference will consider at length the present and future of the industry, focusing on moving towards sustainability. A large part of the sessions will be devoted to production and trade at the domestic and international levels, as well as the latest developments in the shrimp industry. Some 250 delegates, both international and local, representing various segments of the seafood industry, are expected to participate.

A regional proficiency testing workshop for aquatic animal health laboratories was held from 13-14 March in Bangkok, Thailand. The workshop is part of a programme to provide laboratories with the opportunity to assess their own diagnostic performance, and improve their practices. Eight rounds of proficiency testing will be carried out over a period of four years. 34 laboratories from thirteen countries in the region are participating in the programme. The programme is an initiative of the Australian Government.