AquaTT Training News - April 2013

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01 May 2013

Training News is a free e-mail news service provided by AquaTT on education, training, news and events in marine science, aquaculture and related sectors. The newsletter currently reaches over 6000 international recipients on a monthly basis. Please submit any relevant information for inclusion in next month's edition to Please CLICK HERE to go to the archives of AquaTT Training News and Announcements.



To search for MSc programmes, MSc and PhD courses, and other training opportunities (short courses, online courses, work placements, etc) in aquaculture, fisheries and aquatic resource management, please visit the Aqua-tnet Education Gate. This interactive web portal is the one-stop-shop for education in your field. For information on all educational opportunities (courses, workshops, etc), as well as general events (conferences, meetings, etc) please refer to the AquaTT Announcement newsletter which is sent out with Training News. A comprehensive overview of all events is given in the AquaTT Calendar.



Massive Survey of MSFD-Relevant Projects Underway

STAGES FINAL COL LOGOThe STAGES project (Science and Technology Advancing Governance on Good Environmental Status) is an EC FP7-funded project that is directly responding to a request from DG Environment to put a support action in place to facilitate the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). Under the MSFD, EU Member States are expected to assess the overall status of their respective marine environments and to put in place the necessary measures to achieve Good Environmental Status (GES) by 2020.

From January 2013 to date, STAGES has undertaken a significant survey and analysis of MSFD-relevant projects at EU and Member State level. The knowledge outputs collected will be made available in a user-friendly format through the EurOcean Knowledge Gate and will be used to develop state-of-the-art reports on each of the five Thematic Groups relating to the 11 GES descriptors:

  • Biodiversity Group - Biodiversity, Non-indigenous species, Elements of marine food webs and sea floor integrity (Descriptors 1, 2, 4, and 6 respectively)
  • Contaminants & Nutrients Group - Eutrophication, Contaminants and Contaminants in fish and other seafood (Descriptors 5, 8 and 9)
  • Disturbances Group - Marine litter and Underwater energy, including noise (Descriptors 10 and 11)
  • Commercially Exploited fish Group - Population of commercial fish/shellfish (Descriptor 3)
  • Hydrographical Conditions Group -  Alteration of hydrographical conditions (Descriptor 7)

So far, the European knowledge collection survey has identified and contacted 1,500 projects (dating from 2005 until the present day) from 13 funding programmes. These projects' relevance to the MSFD is being currently assessed.

To date, the survey of Member State projects has identified more than 2,000 projects that have marine relevance.

If you are a coordinator of an EU or Member State project of relevance to the MSFD and have not yet been contacted about the STAGES project, please contact EurOcean as soon as possible:

Maica Garriga, Science Officer, EurOcean, E:  T: +351 21 392 4495

If you wish to learn more about the STAGES project visit:


First FORCE Newsletter: Summary of Activities of the First Year

Force final logoThe National Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries (NIOF) of Egypt are pleased to announce the release of the first newsletter for the FORCE (Fisheries and Aquaculture Oriented Research Capacity in Egypt) project.

FORCE is a coordination and support action project funded through the EC’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). It will strengthen the capacity of the NIOF to carry out research activities aimed at supporting the implementation of sound policies, founded on a scientific basis, for the sustainable development of fisheries and aquaculture in Egypt, as well as in the entire Mediterranean North African region.

The first newsletter provides an overview of activities carried out in the first year of the project and can be downloaded HERE.

If you have any questions about the FORCE project or its newsletter, please contact the project coordinator, Prof. Suzan Kholief (email: or the Project Management Team (email:

If you wish to learn more about the FORCE project visit:


SEAFARE Project Addresses the Future of European Smelt

Seafare smallThe SEAFARE project held a two-day workshop on the status of the European smelt (Osmerus eperlanus) on 26 March 2013 in Bangor University, Wales. During the workshop, 25 attendees reviewed the status of the European smelt across its range, the current knowledge base relating to the species and newly developed rearing techniques that will contribute to its conservation.

Dr. Nicholas Jones, Bangor University, was one of the organisers of the workshop: “The workshop was well attended by academics, aquatic consultants and fishery managers alike.  Speakers from Estonia, Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland and from across the UK gave some interesting presentations on the current status of the species, with subsequent discussions among attendees on the conservation and future of the European smelt.”

The European smelt, also known as the “cucumber smelt” due to its similar odour, is a small-to-medium sized fish typically ranging from 20-25cm in size. Smelt populations contribute to supporting small-scale commercial fisheries as they are fished for human consumption, animal feed and bait. The historical decline of the species, an estimated loss of 33% of known smelt populations in England and Wales and a loss of 80% of sites in Scotland, has resulted in the inclusion of the European smelt in the UK priority species list in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan (UK BAP).

One of the key outputs of the SEAFARE project is Conservation Aquaculture Rearing Techniques for the European Smelt, a manual which has been developed by Bangor University. Dr. Jones is a co-author of the manual: “The aim of this manual is to provide the end-user with all the necessary information required to successfully culture the European smelt for conservation aquaculture purposes. It will also be of benefit to those looking to culture this species commercially.”

The SEAFARE project aims to promote the diversification of the aquaculture industry by providing a greater range of species and alternative environmentally-friendly production systems. All the initiatives developed by the project are assessed for their commercial applicability through close collaboration with stakeholders and SMEs. The project involves 14 partners, bringing together applied R&D centres, aquaculture industry organisations and environmental agencies across the Atlantic maritime region to promote the sustainable expansion of European aquaculture.

For more information about SEAFARE and to download Conservation Aquaculture Rearing Techniques for the European Smelt, please visit

The April 2013 issue of SEAFARE Project News is now also available from the SEAFARE website or by clicking HERE.


Europe's Leading Aquaculture Researchers Gather in Brussels for AQUAEXCEL Meeting

Aquaexcel logo

Many of Europe’s leading aquaculture researchers gathered in Brussels on 9 - 11 April 2013 for the second annual meeting of the AQUAEXCEL (Aquaculture Infrastructures for Excellence in European Fish Research) project. Launched in March 2011, AQUAEXCEL aims to integrate key aquaculture research infrastructures across Europe in order to promote their coordinated use and development.

AQUAEXCEL press release April 2013 Brussels Meeting Photograph

The project’s focus is on further improving the efficiency of aquaculture production and the many activities to support this. The meeting, which was attended by EC representatives, provided the project's partners with the opportunity to analyse the achievements and results of AQUAEXCEL to date, which include: conducting a comprehensive mapping of aquaculture research infrastructure capacity across Europe; developing and sharing unique methodologies; and facilitating transnational access to aquaculture research facilities throughout Europe.

Marc Vandeputte is the coordinator of AQUAEXCEL: "This meeting presents us with a platform to discuss and analyse the work achieved so far. It's important that we take this opportunity to assess the level of progress we have made. It also affords us the opportunity to identify how we can improve as we continue to deliver on our targets for the remainder of the project."

The project has published the first in a series of booklets aimed at a general public audience, which will outline AQUAEXCEL's key achievements. The first booklet, AQUAEXCEL Key Achievements 2011 - 2013, is available in hard copy format and is downloadable from

"As consumers become more concerned about where their food comes from, the European aquaculture sector faces complex challenges. AQUAEXCEL is actively working to address these challenges through our transnational access activities, which enable scientists and researchers to freely access aquaculture research not available in their own countries; through our networking activities, which foster a culture of cooperation between AQUAEXCEL and other scientific communities; and through our joint research activities, which aim to improve the quality and quantity of services provided by aquaculture research infrastructures," explained Marc Vandeputte.

For more information about the AQUAEXCEL project, please contact Marieke Reuver, Programme Manager, AquaTT (Email:, or visit:


Second AQUAMED Open Multi-Stakeholder Meeting for Mediterranean Aquaculture to be Held in Istanbul, Turkey

Aquamed logoThe AQUAMED project has organised the second meeting of the AQUAMED Multi-Stakeholder Platform (MSHP) for Mediterranean aquaculture (Southern Europe and North Africa), which will take place in Istanbul, Turkey, on 20-21 May 2013.

AQUAMED (The Future of Research on Aquaculture in the Mediterranean Region) is an EC Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) project which aims to develop a cross-functional strategy for sustainable aquaculture research in the Mediterranean region. The platform is being created to ensure that future research and innovation needs necessary for a sustainable Mediterranean aquaculture industry are identified and prioritised by a multi-stakeholder group.

To learn more about the AQUAMED project, visit


PiscesTT: Job Vacancies, MSc & PhD Vacancies and Student Placements

PiscesTTjobs30If you are interested in viewing or posting a job vacancy please visit the PiscesTT website or contact Click HERE to subscribe to live RSS updates of new job postings.


Student Corner

Win an iPad2: Lindsay Laird Award for the Best Student Poster at 2013 EAS International Conference

Students! If you have submitted a poster for the European Aquaculture Society’s (EAS’s) 2013 International Conference, you could be in with a chance to win the coveted Lindsay Laird Award for Innovation in Aquaculture!

lindsay lairdAt the time of her early death from cancer in 2001, Lindsay Laird was a Senior Teaching Fellow in the Zoology Department at Aberdeen University. From the beginning of her career, Lindsay worked with the expanding Scottish aquaculture industry on different aspects of salmon farming. In 1998, she became the first Chairman of the Organic Fish Producers’ association. She served as Vice-Chairman of the Scottish Fisheries Executive Committee and on the Board of Directors of the European Aquaculture Society from 1994 to 2000, when she was obliged to retire for health reasons. Lindsay also carried out research and gave lectures in countries such as Malaysia, Taiwan, Singapore, Philippines, and Borneo, where a new species of moth (Dasychera lairdi) was named after her.

In 2008, AquaTT and Aqualex Multimedia Consortium (AMC) Ltd established an award in her honour for the most innovative poster (in English) submitted by a student, which concerns research in any one of the following areas:

  • Environmental Impacts in aquaculture
  • New species
  • Hatcheries/early life history
  • Stock production
  • Fish diseases
  • New technologies
  • Genetics/genomics

The award consists of a certificate and an award in the form of the new iPad2 worth €500 and a selection of new publications in aquatic science. The winner will join five previous winners from Germany, Spain, Portugal and the Czech Republic.

Watch this space for more information on the Lindsay Laird Award!

The 2013 EAS International Conference will take place in Trondheim, Norway, on 9-12 August 2013.


Want to Go to Aquaculture Europe 2013 in Trondheim? Need Financial Support? The EAS Student Group Can Help!

The EAS Student Group will offer three travel grants, one worth €500 and two worth €200, to support expenses for attending EAS 2013. This year, the winner of the travel grant for €500 will also give an oral presentation during the EAS-SG workshop at the conference, which is dedicated to aquaculture students. The suggested topic for this presentation is Aquaculture in My Country - Opportunities and Future Perspectives. Please note that the oral presentation should be broad enough to fit the interest of the target audience of aquaculture students. Criteria for application and other further details can be found HERE.


Call for Applications: 3rd ESA Advanced Training Course on Ocean Remote Sensing

As part of the Scientific Exploitation of Operational Missions (SEOM) programme element the European Space Agency (ESA) is organising a series of advanced thematic training courses devoted to training the next generation of Earth Observation (EO) scientists to use data from ESA and operational EO missions for science and applications development. Post-doctoral and graduate research scientists, PhD students and EO information users from European countries and Canada interested in ocean remote sensing and its applications are invited to attend a five day course which will be held at the National Maritime College of Ireland, Cork, Ireland on 23-27 September 2013. Research scientists and students from non-ESA member countries are also welcome to apply and participate in the course subject to space availability. Deadline for submission of applications is 31 May 2013. For more information click HERE.


Other News


Survey on "Ocean of Tomorrow" Calls

The European Commission Directorate General for Research and Innovation (DG RTD) has recently launched a survey which aims to assess and evaluate the relevance and efficiency of the organisation and launch of the seventh framework directive (FP7) "Ocean of Tomorrow" (Joint and Coordinated) Calls which are an implementation initiative stemming from the Action Plan of the European Strategy for Marine and Maritime Research. Applicants in the selection process and participants in projects already funded under one of the "Ocean of Tomorrow" Calls are asked to complete an e-questionnaire and provide feedback on their experiences. The questionnaire will be available online HERE until 20 May 2013, and is anonymous. It will take approximately 20 minutes to complete. The results of the survey (including the results from this questionnaire) will be available on the DG RTD website by September 2013.


Commission Calls for Cooperation to Boost Sustainable Aquaculture in Europe

To boost the development of EU aquaculture, the European Commission has issued strategic guidelines, thereby cooperating with Member States and stakeholders in overcoming the challenges facing the sector. The EU aquaculture sector has a significant growth potential and can help to spare overexploited sea resources. The Guidelines presented on 29 April 2013 will help coordinate efforts across all Member States. They do not create new legal obligations, but present a series of voluntary steps that Member States, the Commission, and stakeholders can take to promote an industry that is economically, socially and environmentally sustainable and provides consumers with healthy, high-quality seafood. For more information about these guidelines, click HERE.


Call for Abstracts: 14th International Symposium on Marine Natural Products and the 8th European Congress on Marine Natural Products 2013 (MaNaPro 2013) 15-20 September 2013, La Toja, Galicia, Spain

The 14th International Symposium on Marine Natural Products and the 8th European Congress on Marine Natural Products 2013 (MaNaPro 2013), organised by PharmaMar, will be held on the island of La Toja, Galicia, Spain on 15-20 September 2013. All participants are invited to submit abstracts or scientific communications for both poster and oral presentations. Submitted abstracts will be peer-reviewed for their acceptance by the organising committee. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 15 May 2013 and guidelines for submission are available HERE.


Call for Abstracts: Aquaculture Conference: To the Next 40 Years of Sustainable Global Aquaculture 3 -7 November 2013, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria

The Aquaculture 2013 Conference will take place in Palacio de Congresos de Canarias, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria on 3-7 November 2013. It will celebrate the last 40 years of outstanding scientific accomplishments in aquaculture and identify the top scientific challenges for the next generation of global aquaculture. Abstracts are now being accepted for oral and poster presentations. The deadline for submission is 24 May 2013 and guidelines for submission can be found HERE.


Call for Abstracts: World Aquaculture Conference and Trade-Show, Adelaide, Australia, 7-11 June 2014

World Aquaculture Adelaide 2014 (WAA14) will be an opportunity for the international aquaculture community to present their work, exchange ideas and develop a vision for the future of the aquaculture industry as we focus on the theme of ‘Create, Nurture, Grow.’ The WAA14 Committee encourages the submission of high quality oral and poster presentations. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 1 November 2013. The Call for Papers and Registration Brochure is available HERE. All presenters are required to pay their own registration, accommodation and travel expenses. WAA14 will not subsidise registration fees, travel or hotel costs. For more information about WAA14, visit


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DISCLAIMER: AquaTT provides this newsletter as a free service to interested parties. Most of the information is provided by AquaTT. Where it is not, the source of the news is provided in the text of the news brief or else AquaTT attributes the news to the coordinating body as the "Data Source Provider". In no way does this newsletter, by promoting events not coordinated by AquaTT, intend to wrongly or inappropriately claim projects, news, etc. as its own nor is it responsible for incorrect information provided from other sources. "Training News" is a promotional tool and forum for both AquaTT and other organisations.
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