Hi I'm
Dr Annette Boerlage

  • Position: Research Fellow
  • Location: Highlands and Islands
  • Expertise:
    • Agriculture, Crops and Soils
    • Climate, Environment and Wildlife
    • Food and Drink
    • Livestock and Fishing
    • Natural Economy

Scroll down to discover more

I am an applied aquatic epidemiologist based in Inverness involved in both research and teaching. I use statistical and mathematical models to obtain insight into the fascinating interactions between environment, host and pathogen in aquaculture systems and industries. My research fits under the umbrella of the blue economy.

My research goal is to deliver evidence-based information that can:

  • Improve health management on aquaculture farms.
  • Mitigate disease, production loss, and mortality of aquaculture stock.
  • Improve sustainability of the industry.

Specific examples of research I am involved with are:

  • case definition development
  • diagnostic tests evaluations
  • sample sizes calculations (e.g.
  • challenge experiments
  • risk factor analysis
  • bio marker analysis
  • estimating effects of disease on production
  • developing decision support tools (e.g.
  • estimating treatment efficacies
  • economic analyses

My research has focussed on challenges in warmwater finfish aquaculture in Vietnam, with species such as tilapia, pangasius catfish, and cobia; and cold-water aquaculture in Canada and Scotland focussed on bacterial kidney disease (BKD), sea lice and marine gill diseases of salmonids. 

Next to research, I am module leader and teach epidemiology skills in the MRes “zoonoses and epidemiology of animal infectious diseases”, a distance learning course that we run out of Inverness. You may also encounter me with students during vet rotations, and I give the odd guest lecture elsewhere.

My education is from Wageningen University, where I have obtained a BSc. In Animal Sciences, an MSc. in Aquaculture and Fisheries, and a PhD in fish-borne zoonotic trematodes.

I like to spend time on the water in my free time.

Areas of expertise and interests

  • Agriculture, Crops and Soils
  • Climate, Environment and Wildlife
  • Food and Drink
  • Livestock and Fishing
  • Natural Economy

I'm currently working on

  • Developing a challenge model for zooplankton for Atlantic salmon
  • Developing decision support tools for mortality in Atlantic salmon
  • better understanding stakeholder needs for decision support tools in Atlantic salmon health management
  • Better understanding welfare challenges of Atlantic salmon in off-shore aquaculture farms
  • The ins and outs of marine gill disease in Atlantic salmon

My professional highlights

  • Co-lead of the fish health workgroup of the Aquaculture Research Collaborative Hub for the UK (Arch-UK)
  • Member of an Expert Panel to improve sea lice management