Animal Care Plan

HMSC Animal Care


Oregon State University’s (OSU) Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC) is committed to the health and well-being of animals used in research, education, and outreach activities on campus. HMSC is also dedicated to educating students and teaching them the skills necessary to be responsible for the ethical and humane treatment of animals in our care.

To support this goal, HMSC has instituted the HMSC Animal Care Plan. This plan includes policies, guidelines, requirements, and resources to support individuals holding animals in captivity at HMSC. All individuals holding animals in captivity at HMSC must review and abide by the HMSC Animal Care Plan, Guidelines for Animal Care, and the open Flow-Through Saltwater System Use Requirements.


HMSC Animal Care Plan

The HMSC Animal Care Plan (ACP) covers the care of all live vertebrate and post-larval nonplanktonic invertebrate animals held in captivity in any of OSU-HMSC facilities and outlines the policies for holding animals in captivity at HMSC. View the ACP.

The HMSC Animal Care Guidelines incorporate best practice methods for animal care. Any Activities involving animals covered by the HMSC Animal Care Plan conducted by personnel working within any of OSU-HMSC facilities must follow these guidelines whenever possible. If it is not possible to achieve the activity goals following the Guidelines, OSU-HMSC personnel must follow best practices to achieve the activity goal with animal welfare in mind.

The seawater system at HMSC delivers over 600 gallons per minute of high-quality seawater to many buildings and labs on campus. The effluent from some of the labs is treated with 2ppm chlorine for a 10-minute residence time before returning to the bay. However, most of the seawater at HMSC is on an open flow-through system, where the seawater is used once and returned to the bay. HMSC follows strict precautionary principles regarding the use of our open saltwater system. Use of the open flow-through saltwater system includes any internal or external lab spaces, tanks, floors, or any surface where water, animals, or contaminates could enter the effluent trough system. To help us meet the state and federal requirements and ensure the health of our local marine waters, all users of the open flow-through saltwater system must abide by the HMSC Open Flow-Through Saltwater System Use Requirements. 


Animal Care Plan training video

Aquatic animal husbandry encompasses all aspects of captive animal care, including system design, animal collection, water quality monitoring, day-to-day care, and endpoint disposition. Ultimately, if you are in charge of animal husbandry, you are responsible for every aspect of the health and well-being of the animals in your care. Building on the HMSC Animal Care Plan Guidelines, this document outlines additional information about aquatic animal care and provides specific species care recommendations.

These Best Practice SOPs are examples of the detailed description of commonly used procedures. Best practice SOPs must be provided whenever a researcher is unable to follow the Guidelines to accomplish the Activity goals.  Not sure if you need a Treatment SOP?  Check out our Treatment SOP checklist.

Contact ACP Committee