Biography Åsa Maria O. Espmark
My working place is at Sunndalsøra and I am employed in the group ”Effective and sustainable production”. My main working areas are welfare, welfare indicators, quality and stress. I am also involved in projects dealing with escape of farmed fish and organic aquaculture. Regarding welfare much of the work is to use well suited behavioral and physiological welfare indicators in large scale production, and to investigate the most suitable indicators that measure stress from suboptimal farming situations. I have mainly worked with water quality, crowding and pumping before slaughter. The most used behavioral variables are swimming activity and distribution in tanks/cages, while physiology mostly is measured with blood and plasma variables thatindicate stress. Regarding crowding and pumping we are also interested to study the relationship between welfare and product quality. In most cases Atlantic salmon is used as experimental specie, but in the work with escape and organic farming cod and other farmed fishes are also of interest. Education I have my education in biology from NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) and got the title Dr. Scient. in 2003 with the thesis ”Behavioral effects of environmental pollution in threespine stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus L.” . The thesis contains four publications where behavior is used as a biomarker to describe effects of different pollutants in threespine sticklebacks.