NZ – 2009 NAEAC annual report released

20-09-2010 | |

Notification of the numbers of animals used in research, testing and teaching in New Zealand has been released in the National Animal Ethics Advisory Committee (NAEAC) Annual Report.

During 2009 a total of 297,111 animals were reported as ‘manipulated’ in research, testing and teaching. This is a decrease of 13% compared to the previous year.

The principal purposes of manipulation in 2009 were veterinary research; basic biological research; and testing the safety and efficacy of animal health products. The animals most commonly used were rodents, farm animals, birds and fish.

NAEAC Chairperson, Virginia Williams, said that despite the year’s numbers dropping by nearly 45,000 the rolling three year reporting average remains steady.

“However, the influence a single project can have on the annual statistics is demonstrated this year by the reporting of a study involving the use of chicken eggs to investigate and monitor exotic avian influenza and other pathogens in wild bird species. This one project was largely responsible for an increase of over 80% in the number of animals manipulated for testing purposes, as well as a significant rise in the proportion of animals killed or euthanased at the end of the testing process”.

All research, testing or teaching involving live animals in New Zealand must be carried out in accordance with the requirements of Part 6 of the Animal Welfare Act 1999 and must be approved by an Animal Ethics Committee (AEC).

Copies of NAEAC Annual Reports are available here