Crab farmers will be happier, and the environment hopefully better, with recent improvements at the mangrove crab hatchery of SEAFDEC/AQD in Iloilo, Philippines. Crablets used in the farming of the prized mangrove crabs, Scylla serrata, are usually collected from the wild and increasing demand has threatened their natural population. However, Huervana recently revealed that simple tweaks in protocols at the SEAFDEC/AQD hatchery have led to a significant boost in their crablet production, with survival increasing twofold.

This report was prepared by the 18th Asia Regional Advisory Group on Aquatic Animal Health (AG) that met at Bangkok, Thailand on 18-19 November 2019. The group discussed OIE standards and global issues, review of regional disease status, reports on the aquatic animal health programmes of partner agencies, and disease reporting.

The 11th Symposium on Diseases in Asian Aquaculture (DAA11) marks 30 years since the Fish Health Section - Asean Fisheries Society (FHS-AFS) establishment and it will be celebrated in Malaysia. Local hosts, the Department of Fisheries Malaysia (DOF) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry together with the Ministry of Modernisation of Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development Sarawak (MANRED) will be organising the event in cooperation with the FHS-AFS.

The Advisory Group (AG) is a body of technical experts that meets annually to provide advice to NACA member governments on aquatic animal health management. The group is drawn from academia, the private sector and government. The role of the AG is to review disease trends in the region, identify emerging threats and developments in global aquatic disease issues and standards, evaluate the Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Reporting Programme operated by NACA/FAO/OIE and regional governments, and to provide guidance on strategies to improve aquatic animal health management. This year’s meeting took place from 18-19 November at the Amari Don Muang Airport Hotel in Bangkok.

In this issue:

Farming of Asian seabass Lates calcarifer in freshwater impoundments in West Bengal, India; An integrated approach to contemporary fish farming practice incorporating traditional knowledge in mid hills in India: A success story; Mud crab farming: An alternative livelihood in the Indian Sundarban; Trout fisheries resources and potentialities in the Menchukha region of Arunachal Pradesh; NACA Newsletter.

Mud crab is one of the most valuable crustaeceans in both domestic and export markets. They are hardy and can survive out of water for extended periods at lower temperatures, making them idea for live export. Mud crab fattening predominates farming practices in Sundarban as opposed to grow-out culture. This report describes current practces adopted by mud crab farmers in India with special reference to the Indian Sundarban, where mud crab capture and farming are an important livelihood for small holder farmers.

This report summarises the proceedings of the 17th meeting of the Advisory Group, held 13-14 November 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand. The group's role includes reviewing disease trends and emerging threats in the region, identifying developments in global aquatic disease issues and standards, evaluating the Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Reporting Programme and providing guidance on regional strategies to improve aquatic animal health management.

The 79th edition of the Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease report contains information from eleven governments. The foreword discusses the outcomes of the 17th Meeting of the Asia Regional Advisory Group on Aquatic Animal Health, held in Bangkok, 13-14 November 2018.

In this issue:

Current status of freshwater cage aquaculture in India; Fattening of mud crab Scylla serrata in estuarine region of south-eastern West Bengal; Aquaponics - sustainable farming method in the fight against hunger; aquatic invasive apple snails (Pomacea spp.) in Timore-Leste - current status, spread and management in rice fields; NACA Newsletter.

Live mud crab has a high export value and good overseas demand. Over the past fifteen years exports from India have increased, with the introduction of crab fattening practices. Wild-caught seed are held in pens constructed of bamboo screens for several weeks and fed to increase their body weight and hence value. Fattened crabs are onsold to traders exporters, who may air lift them to Singapore and other regional markets for the live restaurant trade.