Substantial boost for WA’s fish health capabilities

  • A $1 million election commitment delivered to grow the WA aquaculture industry and support WA jobs
  • New state-of-the-art aquatic animal health laboratories open at Watermans Bay
  • Support for industry to improve finfish and shellfish health and productivity  

On the edge of the ocean at Watermans Bay, in Perth’s northern suburbs, a suite of new laboratories, examination and sampling rooms are now fully operational and providing vital support for Western Australia’s fast-growing aquaculture industry.

The new state-of-the-art facilities deliver on the McGowan Government’s $1 million election commitment to provide cutting-edge fish health and research services to grow Western Australia’s aquaculture industries and support WA jobs.

Managed by aquatic animal health scientists from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, the facilities will bring together government, university partners and industry to develop new aquaculture research and development.

The comprehensive facilities include a high-tech DNA laboratory and a cutting-edge cell culture laboratory, which will help to identify emerging pathogens and understand their distribution and dynamics as well as their potential to cause disease.

High-throughput sample processing robots will also help speed up large-scale pathogen molecular studies, and new equipment will enable rapid assessment of fish and shellfish immunity by examining individual cells from samples.

As stated by Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly:

“These new aquatic animal health facilities will be vital to grow and protect a strong and sustainable aquaculture industry that will deliver jobs and opportunities along WA’s coastline.

“Just last month, we announced that Huon Aquaculture will be setting up a 2,200-hectare yellowtail kingfish farm off Geraldton and that has the potential to create thousands of direct and indirect jobs.

“We have enviable environmental credentials that underpin finfish and shellfish projects, but we need to ensure we can diagnose, manage and overcome future fish health challenges.

“Enhancing our applied health research capacity, by investing in these Watermans Bay facilities, complements existing disease diagnostic and aquaculture services provided to industry by government.”

/Public Release. This material from the originating organization/author(s) may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s).View in full here.