Guidelines for the use of fishes in research
The Ichthyological Society of Japan

Researchers are required to exercise proper regard for animal welfare and the conservation of biodiversity in the use of fishes for research. Research outputs should take into account any possible adverse consequences to fishes and their habitat. Therefore, the members of the Ichthyological Society of Japan are strongly urged to abide by the guidelines listed below:

  1. Studies must comply with international treaties that regulate the capture and donation of wild endangered species and also with the related laws established by national and local governments. In procuring samples, minimizing the disturbance to biotic and abiotic environments should be of primary importance.
  2. Effective disclosure of information to assure that the number of fish captured was least necessary to accomplish the work is encouraged. Preserving a sustainable ecosystem by avoiding excessive specimen collection is strongly encouraged.
  3. From the view of conservation of biodiversity, researchers are restricted from using endangered fishes as study animals. Wherever possible, alternative study animals that are not threatened or endangered should be utilized.
  4. Laboratory experiments that utilize fishes should limit the number of study animals. Furthermore, the proper housing and management of fishes is required as well as minimizing any pain or suffering to fishes. Postoperative care should be exercised to minimize infection with bacterial / virus diseases to study animals. In addition, study animals should not be released into the wild outside of their native range.
  5. Taxonomic studies that entail the use specimens obtained from the wild should register and preserve the specimens with an official research facility.

The Nature Conservation Committee of the Ichthyological Society of Japan declares the right to warn the members who disregard the above guidelines. Furthermore, the Editorial Committee of the Ichthyological Society of Japan may reject submitted papers that involve guideline violations.

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