Guidelines and Resources

​​A range of resources, including guidelines and policies relating to aquatic animal health management, are available for download below. These resources have been produced by or for the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources to address known or emerging needs in aquatic animal health preparedness, response and management. Most policies are developed and endorsed nationally by relevant national committees responsible for aquatic animal health, in consultation with industry where appropriate.

National Management of Aquatic Animal Diseases

AQUAPLAN: Australia’s National Strategic Plan for Aquatic Animal Health

AQUAPLAN 2014-2019 is a comprehensive strategy developed by industry and government that outlines objectives and priorities to build and enhance Australia’s aquatic animal health management capacity. Previous AQUAPLANs and the review of AQUAPLAN 1998-2003 and AQUAPLAN 2005-2010 are also available below.

DocumentPagesFile size
AQUAPLAN 2014-2019 PDF324 MB
AQUAPLAN 2005-2010 PDF544 MB
AQUAPLAN 1998-2003 PDF361.6 MB
Review of AQUAPLAN 1998-2003 PDF441 MB

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Disease Watch: Aquatic Animal Health Awareness

The Disease Watch section of this website is an initiative of the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. It provides information and awareness resources on aquatic animal disease management in Australia including videos, information packages and government contact information. Disease Watch materials are intended for aquatic animal health professionals and people who have an interest in aquatic animal health.

National Policy Guidelines for Translocation of Domestic Bait and Berley

Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, 2015

The movement of bait and berley products within Australia has the potential to introduce or spread aquatic animal diseases. The National Policy Guidelines for Translocation of Domestic Bait and Berley were developed to provide a national framework for creation of bait translocation policies in Australia’s states and territories to address identified disease risks. The guidelines provide information on bait and berley products, the nature of disease risks, principles for policy development, possible instruments for managing identified risks, and a staged approach for policy development. General information on the appropriate use of bait and berley in Australia can also be found under ‘what you can do to protect Australia’s aquatic animal health’.

DocumentPagesFile size
National Policy Guidelines for Translocation of Domestic Bait and Berley PDF311.36 MB
National Policy Guidelines for Translocation of Domestic Bait and Berley DOCX31372 KB

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Zoning Policy Guidelines

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, August 2000

Zoning policy guidelines explain the generic principles of zoning based on pathogen distribution, the movement principles between zones and international relevance of national zoning. The guidelines were jointly developed by the private sector and the Australian and state and territory governments.

DocumentPagesFile size
Zoning Policy Guidelines PDF31154 KB

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Emergency Preparedness and Response

Aquaculture Farm Biosecurity Plan: generic guidelines and template

Sub-Committee on Aquatic Animal Health, 2016.

The Aquaculture Farm Biosecurity Plan: generic guidelines and template were developed as part of Activity 1.1 of AQUAPLAN 2014-2019. The document was developed by a Sub-Committee on Aquatic Animal Health (SCAAH) writing group who drew on multiple sources of information, including the Farm Biosecurity series of terrestrial animal biosecurity plans published by Animal Health Australia. The document was endorsed by the then National Aquatic Animal Health Industry Reference Group.

The document aims to guide the development of biosecurity plans for application at the farm level. It has been developed as a generic document that is not targeted at a specific aquaculture sector. This document can be adapted for the purposes of specific aquaculture sectors or specific production systems.

DocumentPagesFile size
Aquaculture Farm Biosecurity Plan - generic guidelines and template PDF238.5 MB
Aquaculture Farm Biosecurity Plan - generic guidelines and template DOCX387.5 MB

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National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for specific aquaculture sectors

Through Activity 1.1 of AQUAPLAN 2014-2019, National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines were developed for specific aquaculture industry sectors that expressed interest. These guidelines and templates set out the best practice biosecurity planning tailored to the specific sector. Sector-level guidance facilitates a nationally consistent approach to biosecurity planning and helps meet common levels of biosecurity risk management.

National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for the Land Based Abalone Industry

Spark et al., 2018. (FRDC project 2016-245)

DocumentPagesFile size
National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for the Land Based Abalone Industry PDF642.6 MB
National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for the Land Based Abalone Industry DOCX651.2 MB

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National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Barramundi Farms

Landos et al., 2019. (FRDC project 2016-147)

DocumentPagesFile size
National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Barramundi Farms PDF562 MB
National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Barramundi Farms DOCX562.5 MB

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National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Oyster Hatcheries

Spark et al., 2018. (FRDC project 2016-245)

DocumentPagesFile size
National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Oyster Hatcheries PDF663.9 MB
National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Oyster Hatcheries DOCX651.0 MB

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National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Prawn Farms

The Australian Prawn Farmers Association has developed a national biosecurity plan guideline and template for the Australian prawn farming industry. This industry led project was funded by the Department of Agriculture through the Stronger Biosecurity and Quarantine Initiative.

The final draft (2019) of the National Biosecurity Plan Guidelines for Australian Prawn Farms is available on request. If you would like a copy of the final draft prawn plan please contact the Aquatic Pest and Health Policy section.

AQUAVETPLAN

AQUAVETPLAN is the Australian Aquatic Veterinary Emergency Plan. It is a manual that outlines Australia’s approach to national disease preparedness and proposes the technical response and control strategies to be activated in a national aquatic animal disease emergency.

Australia’s National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals

Australia’s National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals is used to define and meet Australia’s international reporting obligations, as well as provide a framework for national reporting for endemic diseases of concern. States and territories regularly report to the Australian Government on their status for nationally listed diseases. Provisions also allow for reporting new or emerging aquatic animal disease and the national communication of these diseases. Updates to diseases on the National List are considered annually.

Aquatic Animal Diseases Significant to Australia: Identification Field Guide

The Identification Field Guide aims to assist in the early recognition of diseases with potential to affect Australian aquatic animal industries and the environment. The field guide contains information on field recognition, and gross and microscopic signs of aquatic animal diseases included on Australia’s National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals.

Standard Diagnostic Techniques

Australian and New Zealand Standard Diagnostic Procedures (ANZSDPs) are used to facilitate the standardisation of diagnostic test methodology and the interpretation of results.

Fish Kills Protocol

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, 2007

The National Investigation and Reporting Protocol for Fish Kills was developed to provide a consistent national approach, and minimum standards, for the investigation and reporting of fish kill incidents. Thorough investigation of fish kills—unusual mortality events in non-mammalian aquatic animals—can provide early warning of exotic or emerging diseases that could threaten Australia’s aquatic ecosystems, fisheries resources or aquaculture industries. Many fish kills are related to environmental issues, so investigation protocols are required to differentiate disease from environmental problems. If you see anything unusual, it can be reported to the national Disease Watch hotline on 1800 675 888.

DocumentPagesFile size
Fish Kills Protocol PDF16551 KB
Fish Kill Incident Log Form PDF1590 KB

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Most Australian States and Territories have individual requirements for reporting fish kills. Protocols for reporting are listed on government websites, with links and contact numbers for reporting fish kills available below.

Disease Surveillance Guidelines

National Aquatic Animal Health Technical Working Group, 2004

Aquatic animals are produced in a variety of systems. Surveillance programs need to be tailored to individual production systems, building on basic surveillance principles. These guidelines recommend elements to be considered when designing and implementing an appropriate surveillance system. The national surveillance guidelines are designed for domestic situations and are consistent with OIE standards as described in the OIE Aquatic Animal Health Code.

DocumentPagesFile size
Disease Surveillance Guidelines PDF37303 KB

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Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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