Sea lice in aquaculture

We are studying the life cycle of sea lice, a prevalent and devastating threat to commercial aquaculture worldwide.

Whenever new fish are taken into marine aquaculture, sea lice are sure to follow. These parasitic copepods pose a major health hazard for finfish aquaculture globally, causing substantial economic loss when they strike fish farms.

We are researching sea lice in order to determine how to minimise their impact on commercial aquaculture.

We are focussing on:

  • the life cycle of sea lice in collaboration with groups in Japan and South Korea
  • revising the classification of sea lice using DNA sequence data
  • building an online interactive identification key for sea louse species

We have already identified that the life cycle of the salmon louse genus (Lepeophtheirus) contains two fewer stages than previously thought, which could help manage infestations.


The farming of aquatic organisms, including fish, crustaceans, molluscs and aquatic plants.

External collaborators