Fish disease and biosecurity: attitudes, beliefs, ...

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Title Fish disease and biosecurity: attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions of managers and owners of commercial finfish recirculating facilities in the United States and Canada
Author(s) J. L. Delabbio, Gerald R. Johnson, B. R. Murphy, E. Hallerman, A. Woart, S. L. McMullin
Journal Journal of Aquatic Animal Health
Date 2005
Volume 17
Issue 2
Start page 153
End page 159
Abstract In recirculation finfish facilities in the United States and Canada, biosecurity utilization is neither consistent nor uniform. Seeking reasons for this situation, we examined the beliefs, perceptions, and attitudes of managers and owners of such facilities about fish disease and biosecurity utilization. A questionnaire was mailed in the fall of 2001 to the managers and owners of 152 finfish-rearing recirculation facilities in the United States and Canada to gather information on their attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions regarding fish disease and biosecurity. The response rate to the survey was 86%. This paper reports on a subset of the overall responses, the responses of managers and owners who identified their facility as a business operation. Although respondents had a positive attitude towards biosecurity utilization, they had different beliefs about which disease types were of greatest concern for their farm. Respondents also had differing perceptions on the risk of disease transmission associated with different activities on their farms. In addition, respondents had various beliefs about the practicality and effectiveness of different biosecurity measures and why the practice of biosecurity was important to their farms. This study gives quantitative evidence that different fish farmers perceive disease and the practice of biosecurity differently. This study indicates that recognition of the human dimensions element is an important first step in the creation of biosecurity policies, strategies, and procedures that will be readily accepted and implemented and consistently applied by fish farmers on their farms. The findings challenge the heretofore traditionally accepted belief that poor biosecurity practice on a farm is primarily related to lack of knowledge about biosecurity..
DOI 10.1577/H04-005.1
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