Mortality events in aquaculture require comprehensive investigation to establish aetiology. This assists with providing effective treatments (if available) and maintaining trade and market access. Good evidence of the diseases status of Australian farms is crucial in negotiating with countries we export to. This was illustrated recently when Canada stopped all Australian abalone imports and requested disease free certification for numerous diseases. In order to facilitate trade and market access, and improve the understanding of summer mortality in Australian abalone, it would be valuable to:
1. Summarise current abalone health and summer mortality research to identify key risk factors associated with summer mortality and develop industry guidelines for reporting summer mortality events
2. Develop a case definition for summer mortality
3. Summarise retrospective mortality investigations and laboratory submissions for Australian abalone
4. Investigate summer mortality events during the life of the project to comprehensively rule out primary pathogens and infectious agents in both control and impacted populations.
i. Chronic mortality of unknown cause (if in doubt take this to mean >0.15% mortality of individuals in a tank per day (tank-1 day-1) for at least one week) above the farm’s winter baseline mortality rate in >1 year old abalone, and
ii. occurs in at least two culture units, and
iii. occurs between January and April, but,
iv. excludes those diagnosed with an OIE notifiable disease as the primary cause of mortality.