Aquaculture Management

The Aquaculture Management Regulations provide a regulatory framework for aquaculture operations in Nova Scotia. These regulations enable the Department to ensure sustainability in the aquaculture industry through responsible oversight and greater transparency.

If a member of the public has concerns about compliance with these regulations, they can contact Nova Scotia Environment at 1-800-565-2224.

Farm Management Plan Program

The preparation of a Farm Management Plan (FMP) is a requirement of aquaculture licence holders in Nova Scotia. FMPs include information on fish health management, environmental monitoring, farm operations and containment management.

The FMP and its associated documents are reviewed and approved by the Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture to ensure that the aquaculture licence holder’s described farm operations, procedures, and records comply with the Aquaculture Management Regulations.

Farm Management Plan Compliance Requirements

Aquaculture licence holder’s described farm operations, procedures, and records must comply with the Aquaculture Management Regulations.

The FMP minimum compliance requirements are:

For more information, please refer to sections 5-15 of the Aquaculture Management Regulations

Environmental Monitoring Program

The environmental monitoring program (EMP) is an important monitoring and regulatory tool that is used to maintain balance between the aquaculture operation and the environment it operates within. The EMP applies to both finfish and shellfish aquaculture operations in a variety of marine ecosystems. The function of the EMP is to monitor the effects of an aquaculture operation on the marine environment and respond if balance is disrupted.

Aquatic Animal Health

Department staff offer veterinary services to help maintain and monitor aquatic animal health in aquaculture. Veterinary health programs are key for the maintenance and growth of the sector. Services also include supporting animal welfare, as well as preventing, diagnosing and treating aquatic animals when necessary.

The program is based in the Veterinary Pathology Building on the campus of the Dalhousie University - Faculty of Agricultural, in Truro. Aquatic species undergo autopsies at this facility, and appropriate tests are run to determine health status.

On-site surveillance at provincial aquaculture sites is also provided. The fish are observed and tested as required. For example, fish may be tested for the presence of viruses, bacteria, fungus, parasites, etc.

Similar services are also available to fish hatchery and nursery sites.

The Aquatic Animal Health Program is tied to regulatory oversight of the industry through the Fisheries and Coastal Resources Act and regulations.

List of Reportable Fish Health Disease

The following is a list of reportable disease. Under the Nova Scotia Aquaculture Management Regulations an aquaculture license holder, a member of the personnel of an aquaculture operation, a veterinarian, and/or a member of the personnel of a laboratory must immediately report to the Chief Aquatic Animal Health Veterinarian the knowledge or suspicion of a reportable disease listed below. The report should be made by calling 902-893-5359. The call must be followed by a written report no later than 24 hours and submitted to


  • Aeromonas salmonicida (typical and atypical furunculosis)
  • Renibacterium salmoninarum (bacterial kidney disease)
  • Yersina ruckeri (enteric red mouth disease)


  • Infectious Hematopoietic Necrosis (IHN) Virus
  • Infectious Pancreatic Necrosis (IPN) Virus
  • Infectious Salmon Anemia (ISA) Virus
  • Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia (VHS) Virus
  • Nodavirus (Viral encephalopathy retinopathy)
  • Pancreas Disease (PD)