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Annex III - Farm guidelines for health management

· Farmers should implement methods for selection of healthy PL for stocking their ponds.

· Methods of water treatment should be analysed for their efficacy in reducing disease risks, reservoirs should be used.

· The use of 160-300 micron screens for all water entering ponds should be promoted as a means of excluding viral carrier organisms from the pond.

· Methods for controlling land and air-based transmission of disease should be investigated.

· Biosecurity measures should be implemented including restricting transfer of equipment and personnel between ponds.

· The risk of disease transfer should be carefully considered before combining shrimp from two or more ponds.

· The stocking of indigenous and alien shrimp species in the same pond, or even farm, should be avoided unless SPF animals of both species are being used.

· Crop rotation, fallowing and dry-out strategies should be considered to reduce problems with transmission of pathogens between cycles.

· Reduced water exchange strategies including stimulation of pond productivity and low protein diets should be encouraged to reduce environmental impacts.

· The utility of "green water" and polyculture of shrimp and fish strategies should be investigated for their abilities to reduce disease occurrence.

· The use of fresh feeds should be discouraged on the farm.

· In the event of emergency harvests, farmers should cooperate by informing their neighbours (possibly sharing costs) and disinfecting any discharges before they effect the environment.

· Research the development of farm-based, real-time diagnostic tests to permit enhanced decision-making at farm level.

· Train pathologists and farmers in use, interpretation, standardization and cross-checking of diagnostic tests.

· Regular dry-out of ponds and farms should be encouraged.

· Where seasonality occurs, risk avoidance strategies during high risk periods should be encouraged.

· Processing plant managers and operators should be informed of the dangers of disposal of untreated wastes into the environment, and encouraged to adopt safe protocols for their disposal.

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