I am a Research Fellow in the Breeding and Physiology research group at the Institute of Aquaculture. I have been researching and working at the University of Stirling since 2001 when I was awarded an MSc with distinction in Aquaculture and in 2008 a PhD in Aquatic Veterinary Studies. Since then, I have focussed my research on aquatic animal behaviour through working on a wide range of research projects in aquaculture.
My current research involves improving farmed cleaner fish stocks (ballan wrasse and lumpfish) for better welfare, survival and delousing efficiency in salmon net pens. Since 2016, I have led several project work packages in cleaner fish behaviour and cage management, and I am currently co-investigator for two projects investigating cleaner fish and salmon behaviour in commercial net pens. A primary focus of my work is using hydroacoustics to study the behaviour of tagged fish within a hydrophone array.
I come from a background of environmental science and marine biology having graduated from the University of Southampton with a BSc (Hons) in Environmental Science in 1995.
Event / Presentation
Optimising the delousing performance of farmed ballan wrasse (Labrus bergylta) by acclimation to net-pen conditions. Aquaculture Europe 17 European Aquaculture Society
Discrimination learning and its application in lumpfish (Cyclopterus lumpus) delousing behaviour University of Stirling
The project is a first step towards understanding whether training protocols used in comparative psychology can encourage delousing behaviour in farmed lumpfish (i.e. whether lumpfish naïve to salmon and sea lice can be trained to delouse salmon). The project will examine whether lumpfish can be trained to discriminate between two ecologically valid visual stimuli, a fake-model salmon with sea lice and one without lice.
The primary drivers of my research are environmental conservation/sustainability and animal welfare. The oceans are one of our greatest global resources and only by working together with all stakeholders and in harmony with nature can we expect to achieve sustainable development.
Behaviour is a key indicator of animal welfare, and I am interested in how it can be observed in cultured aquatic species as an insight into their welfare status and also to facilitate/utilise natural behaviours. Parasites are an important component of aquatic food webs, and I am interested in how they can be better managed in aquaculture to achieve more efficient, sustainable and high-welfare food production systems. My current work combines these interests to utilise a natural behaviour in cleaner fish (delousing) as a biological control of sea lice in salmon farming.
Devenport E, Brooker E, Brooker A & Leakey C (2021) Insights and recommendations for involving young people in decision making for the marine environment. Marine Policy, 124, Art. No.: 104312. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2020.104312
Brooker AJ, Davie A, Leclercq E, Zerafa B & Migaud H (2020) Pre-deployment acclimatisation of farmed ballan wrasse (Labrus bergylta) to sea-cage conditions promotes behaviour analogous to wild conspecifics when used as cleaner fish in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) farms. Aquaculture, 520, Art. No.: 734771. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aquaculture.2019.734771
Leclercq E, Zerafa B, Brooker AJ, Davie A & Migaud H (2018) Application of passive-acoustic telemetry to explore the behaviour of ballan wrasse (Labrus bergylta) and lumpfish (Cyclopterus lumpus) in commercial Scottish salmon sea-pens. Aquaculture, 495, pp. 1-12. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aquaculture.2018.05.024
Brooker AJ, Papadopoulou A, Gutierrez C, Rey S, Davie A & Migaud H (2018) Sustainable production and use of cleaner fish for the biological control of sea lice: recent advances and current challenges. Veterinary Record, 183, Art. No.: 383. https://doi.org/10.1136/vr.104966
Brooker A, Skern-Mauritzen R & Bron J (2018) Production, mortality, and infectivity of planktonic larval sea lice, Lepeophtheirus salmonis (Krøyer, 1837): current knowledge and implications for epidemiological modelling. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 75 (4), pp. 1214-1234. https://doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsy015
Brooker A, Davie A & Migaud H (2017) Optimising the delousing performance of farmed ballan wrasse (Labrus bergylta) by acclimation to net-pen conditions. Aquaculture Europe 17, Dubrovnik, 17.10.2017-20.10.2017. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/320923247_Optimising_the_delousing_performance_of_farmed_ballan_wrasse_Labrus_bergylta_by_acclimation_to_net-pen_conditions
Brooker A, Wootten R, Shinn A & Bron J (2016) An assessment of the potential for zoonotic parasitic nematode infections arising from the consumption of maricultured Atlantic halibut, Hippoglossus hippoglossus (L.), and rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss (Walbaum), in Scotland. Food Control, 66, pp. 198-204. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2016.02.011
Shinn A, Pratoomyot J, Bron J, Paladini G, Brooker EE & Brooker A (2015) Economic impacts of aquatic parasites on global finfish production. Global Aquaculture Advocate, September/October 2015, pp. 58-61. http://pdf.gaalliance.org/pdf/GAA-Shinn-Sept15.pdf
Shinn A, Pratoomyot J, Bron J, Paladini G, Brooker EE & Brooker A (2015) Economic costs of protistan and metazoan parasites to global mariculture. Parasitology, 142 (Special Issue 1), pp. 196-270. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0031182014001437
Brooker A, Shinn A, Souissi S & Bron J (2013) Role of kairomones in host location of the pennellid copepod parasite, Lernaeocera branchialis (L. 1767). Parasitology, 140 (6), pp. 756-770. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0031182012002119
Brooker A, Shinn A & Bron J (2012) Use of laser scanning confocal microscopy for morphological taxonomy and the potential for digital type specimens (e-types). Aquatic Biology, 14 (2), pp. 165-173. https://doi.org/10.3354/ab00389
Brooker A, Bron J & Shinn A (2012) Description of the free-swimming juvenile stages of Lernaeocera branchialis (Pennellidae), using traditional light and confocal microscopy methods. Aquatic Biology, 14 (2), pp. 153-163. https://doi.org/10.3354/ab00388
Brooker A, Grano-Maldonado M, Irving S, Bron J, Longshaw M & Shinn A (2011) The effect of octopaminergic compounds on the behaviour and transmission of Gyrodactylus. Parasites and Vectors, 4, p. 207. https://doi.org/10.1186/1756-3305-4-207
Brooker A, Shinn A & Bron J (2007) A review of the biology of the parasitic copepod Lernaeocera branchialis (L., 1767) (Copepoda : Pennellidae). Advances in Parasitology, 65, pp. 297-341. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0065-308X%2807%2965005-2
Corner R, Brooker A, Telfer T & Ross L (2006) A fully integrated GIS-based model of particulate waste distribution from marine fish-cage sites. Aquaculture, 258 (41000), pp. 299-311. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/00448486; https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aquaculture.2006.03.036