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24 June 1999
The number of animals that died in New Zealand during use in research decreased by more than a quarter compared to previous years, according to the National Animal Ethics Advisory Committee (NAEAC)'s Annual Report just released.
Previously almost half the animals used in research died or were destroyed during or after manipulation. In 1998, that number was reduced by 28.5 percent.
However, the overall total of animals used in experimentation increased last year. This goes against the yearly trend of declining animal use in research. An almost sixfold increase in the use of fish in biological research accounts for this increase. As a consequence, fish constitute the most frequently used animal type by a large margin.
The next most frequently used species, in descending order, were sheep, cattle and mice.
There were also significant increases in the use of birds, cats, dogs, hamsters, marine mammals, rats and reptiles. However this was offset by a reduction in the use of amphibians, cattle, goats, guinea pigs, horses, mice and pigs.
NAEAC was formed in 1984 to provide independent, high quality advice to the Minister for Food, Fibre, Biosecurity and Border Control on policy and practices relating to the use of animals in research, testing and
The Animals Protection (Codes of Ethical Conduct) Regulations 1987 require that any institution, organisation or individual who uses live animals for the purpose of research, testing and teaching, must have an approved Code of Ethical Conduct relating to the welfare and humane treatment of the animals involved.
The 1998 NAEAC Annual Report is available now.
Media inquiries to:
Keith Robinson, NAEAC Chairman, (04) 495 3457,
or for a copy of the latest annual report contact Kate Horrey,
Tel: 04 4744 296, or access the MAF website