Animal Ethics Policy & TOR


Ethical clearance of research is a fundamental requirement for institutions dealing directly with the collection or use of animals for scientific research. Animal research undertaken at NRF-SAIAB is diverse, including research on invertebrates, fishes, amphibians and occasionally reptiles, and includes:

  • Collection of animals as museum specimens and for reference collections
  • Collection of animals for biodiversity census
  • Collection of animals for ecological studies including the subsequent examination of these animals whole or in part for biological analyses
  • Experimentation on animals under laboratory conditions.

NRF-SAIAB is committed to ethical conduct with regards to the treatment of animals and the environment, and conforms to The South African National Standard for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purpose (SANS 10386:2008: 2022), stakeholder norms, as well as to international publishing requirements.

Owing to the diversity of research techniques, study species and aquatic environments in which scientists at NRF-SAIAB work, all research undertaken by researchers at SAIAB that involves live animals requires clearance by the SAIAB Animal Ethics Committee (AEC). The SAIAB AEC conforms to the requirements set out in SANS 10386:2022.

SAIAB Animal Ethics Policy (August 2021)

Animal Ethics Committee Terms of Reference (August 2021)

SAIAB is busy developing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the various functions and processes of the Animal Ethics Committee and various research methodologies used in aquatic biodiversity science. 

To apply for animal ethics clearance and approval:


Dr Willem Coetzer, Chairperson, SAIAB Animal Ethics Committee - W.Coetzer[at]
Dr Carla Edworthy, Coordinator, SAIAB Animal Ethics Committee - C.Edworthy[at]