Beginning in 1999, the Browman and Skiftesvik Lab, and David Fields and other collaborators, have been studying the sensory cues that underlie host-finding in the parasitic salmon louse (Lepeophtheirus salmonis). The objective has been to develop traps that can capture and retain salmon lice, to both monitor their abundance in the water column and to remove them from the area around salmon farms, thereby reducing parasitic infestations on salmon. These traps take advantage of information collected from unqiue behavioral observations and neurophysiological assays that have allowed us to chracterize the optimal host signals for the parasite.

“Kjenner lusa på gangen” – is a video, released in 2012, about our lice trap development project in cooperation with Eker Design and the Norwegian Design Council presented by Bård Eker at Norwegian Design Day 2012. Click HERE to watch the video and HERE to read a news item from November 2011 about the project (note that both are mostly in Norwegian).

The research on which the design of these traps is based has been reported in the following publications.

Novales Flamarique, I., H.I. Browman, M. Bélanger & K. Boxaspen. 2000. Ontogenetic changes in visual responses of the parasitic salmon louse, Lepeoptheirus salmonis. Journal of Experimental Biology 203: 1649-1657. Read the paper

Browman, H.I., K. Boxaspen & P. Kuhn. 2004. The effect of light on the settlement of the parasitic salmon louse (Lepeophtheirus salmonis) onto Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). Journal of Fish Diseases 27: 701-708. Read the paper

Fields, D., M. Weissburg & H.I. Browman. 2007. Chemoreception in the salmon louse (Lepeoptheirus salmonis): an electrophysiological approach. Diseases of Aquatic Organisms. 78: 161-168. Read the paper

Fields, D.M., H.I. Browman & A.B. Skiftesvik. 2018. Behavioural responses of infective-stage copepodids of the salmon louse (Lepeoptheirus salmonis) to host related sensory cues. Journal of Fish Diseases (in press). Read the paper

Contact Howard Browman for more information.