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.

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 78th edition of the Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Report contains information from twelve governments in the Asia-Pacific region. The foreword discusses three recent aquatic animal health consultations: The ASEAN Regional Technical Consultation on Aquatic Emergency Preparedness and Response Systems for Effective Management of Transboundary Disease Outbreaks in Southeast Asia; the Regional Consultation and Related Study on Antimicrobial Resistance Risk to Aquaculture in Asia; and the Preliminary Consultation on Monitoring of Antimicrobial Resistance in Bacterial Pathogens in Aquaculture.

In this issue:

Concept of seed production of Heteropneustes fossilis in farmers' fields in West Bengal, India; Fishing gear and practices in flood waters of Assam; Fisherwomen empowerment: Shedding light on the invisible gender; Integrated multi-trophic aquaculture systems: A solution of sustainability.

Marine aquaculture of high value species such as fish is generally reliant on external food supplies and has a negative impact on water quality, generating high organic and nutrient loadings. Integrated multi-trophic aquaculture offers a solution to reduce environmental impact of farming systems, culturing complimentary species that can recycle nutrients and reduce nutrient pollution while generating additional products for sale. This article looks at species selection and integration of trophic levels in system design.

The 77th edition of the Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Report contains information from nine governments. The foreword discusses an intensive seven-day training course on tilapia lake virus (TiLV) that was jointly organised by China's National Fisheries Extension Center, Sun Yat-Sen University and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

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.

The 76th edition of the Quarterly Aquatic Animal Disease Report contains information from 14 governments. The foreword discusses the outcomes of a Stakeholder Consultation on Progressive Management Pathway to Improve Aquaculture Biosecurity, organised by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Mississippi State University and the World Bank.