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IFREMER student visits Fiskeriforskning for training

In November 2006 Ph.D. Sandie Millot and her supervisor Marie-Laure Bégout from IFREMER visited Fiskeriforskning in Tromsø after obtaining a training grant from the SEAFOODplus training budget. Researchers working on the SEAFOODplus project 5.2 ETHIQUAL hosted the visit in Tromsø and provided facilities for aquaculture studies.


Below is the report from the training visit.




Authors: Sandie Millot and Marie-Laure Bégout



Sandie Millot (left) and Marie-Laure Bégout

The title of the Ph.D. thesis of Sandie Millot is 'Domestication, Selection and Behaviour in Seabass : Variability in behavioural abilities and stress tolerance of different strains'.


Supervisors at IFREMER are Marie-Laure Bégout and Béatrice Chatain.


Within the SEAFOODplus Training and Mobility framework we had applied for a financial support for a “Training on Coping Style Assessment” with the objectives of inter-institute method calibration and experience sharing. We realized the training visit in November 2006 and it included the sharing of ongoing experimental protocols on preference/avoidance characterisation of individual fish and training on the integrated video tracking system for automation of behavioural studies.


The 'Havbruk Station' outside Tromsø

From Marie-Laure Bégout:

I stayed from 6-10 November 2006 and had

1) an “ETHIQUAL” meeting with Børge Damsgård and Hilde Toften in order to prepare the organization of a forthcoming workshop to be held in Bilbao during the SEAFOODplus conference 4 - 6 June 2007 and the realization of an experiment using the SmartTag on seabass with Øyvind Aas Hansen in summer of 2007;

2) I had a very fruitful visit to the Research Station in Havbruk and could see the ongoing research and

3) I also had a very interesting work session with Børge Damsgård about the protocols and data treatments performed by Sandie Millot in her PhD experiments which are part of the ETHIQUAL project.



Sea Cage experiment facility of Fiskeriforskning

From Sandie Millot :

I stayed from 6-17 November 2006 in Tromsø (Norway) at FISKERIFORSKNING laboratory. It enabled me to train on integrated video analysis applied to fish behavioural study and to learn the use of two softwares: Ethovision and The Observer conceived by Noldus that are dedicated to the study of animal behaviour. Such investigation method holds a great place in the project ETHIQUAL and represents an important area of my thesis subject. During that period, I have taken part in an experimentation carried out by Linda Hansen with the help of Tor Evensen, which consisted in the study of the preference/avoidance behaviour of salmon toward a water flow of poor quality (in this case an increase in CO2 concentration in the water was applied). The salmon had the possibility to either flee towards a zone of the tank where water was of good quality, or remain in the zone where water with high CO2 was injected. Displacements of the fish in the tank were recorded and treated by the Ethovision software. These data made it possible to know exactly the time spent by the fish in each part of the tank and the latency period necessary for the salmon to evaluate the water quality change. The software The Observer was mainly used for counting and quantifying the behaviours expressed by the individual during the experiment.


This stay was also very enriching, because it enabled me to exchange on working methods. Indeed, during two weeks, I could observe the methods and technicalities used in the Norwegian work and discuss with researchers and technicians about those I use in France for my thesis. Furthermore, I could learn about the swimming tunnel apparatus and the method of individual feed intake quantification by X-Rays. Overall, such training was of primary importance for me, because in January 2007 these apparatuses will be used in my thesis and developed within the framework of ETHIQUAL.


During my stay in Tromsø, I could also visit with great interest most of the laboratory infrastructures, like the experimental sea cages and the cod breeding station.