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Zum tierschutzgerechten Betäuben und Töten von Aal = On the stunning and slaughtering of eels (Anguilla anguilla) in accordance with animal welfare
Kuhlmann, H.; Münkner, W.; Oehlenschläger, J.; van de Vis, H. (2001). Zum tierschutzgerechten Betäuben und Töten von Aal = On the stunning and slaughtering of eels (Anguilla anguilla) in accordance with animal welfare. Inf. Fischwirtsch. Fischereiforsch. 48(2): 82-89
In: Informationen für die Fischwirtschaft. Bundesforschungsanstalt für Fischerei: Hamburg. ISSN 0020-0344, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Kuhlmann, H.
  • Münkner, W.
  • Oehlenschläger, J.
  • van de Vis, H., more

Abstract
    Slaughtering of eels should be done not only under animal welfare aspects but as well under consumer protection and economical aspects with respect to technical feasibility. Methods must be practicable for enterprises slaughtering quantities of several kilograms up to several tons per day. Most methods applied up to now in whole Europe were (are) not in accordance with animal welfare mainly due to lacking prescriptions and alternative methods. The great number of experiments carried out within the frame of this project demonstrate the difficulties to combine optimal animal welfare demands with economical and technical feasibility aspects in one method. Measurements of EEG (electro-encephalogram) and ECG (electrocardiogram) have shown, that the method laid down in the german legislation does not perfectly stun all eels. This method was improved by applying a "prestun" with 220V for 1 sec., followed by a 5 minute phase at 45V to prolong the time of unconsciesness after the stun. Inflating nitrogen gas into the stunning bath additionally caused asphyxia during the stun. By this method 93% of the eels were stunned or even killed. Applying 220V for bigger batches of eels (~400kg) will cause big problems with the energy supply. Therefore this method is restricted to batches of 20-50kg. The method laid down in the german legislation probably can be improved. Eels were stunned succesfully without water, avoiding the problems of regional differences in the conductivity of water. Other types of current and other frequencies and a combination of both should be tested as well as alternative electrode geometries also with respect to blood spots which occasionally occurred in the muscles preferably of bigger eels (>800g). For the time being the method laid down in the german legislation is a reasonable compromise and under animal welfare aspects represents considerable improvement.

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