In this project, INRA, the main institute for agronomic research in France puts forward three installations for TNA: 

1) PEIMA is the main salmonid experimental station in France, and one of the largest in Europe, and is dedicated to all kinds of studies on mainly trout genetics and physiology, and interaction between those; 

2) INRA St Pée Infrastructure which is a unique set of installations devoted to nutrition research in freshwater salmonids; 

3) INRA-IERP (Fish Infectiology Platform) is the INRA experimental facility dedicated to fish infectiology. INRA has internationally-recognized teams in fish physiology, genetics, nutrition and pathology (>400 peer-reviewed papers in the last 5 years) which will be involved in the networking and joint research activities.

Name of the infrastructure: INRA-PEIMA (Pisciculture Expérimentale INRA des Monts d’Arrée)
Location: Sizun, FRANCE
Website address:
Contact: Laurent Labbé


PEIMA is the reference experimental unit for research on all stages of the life cycle of salmonids performed within several INRA departments, mostly in physiology (reproduction, growth, behaviour, adaptation, etc.), genetics and nutrition. It is equipped with:

  • Two separate water supplies:
  1.  River, with a flow rate of 900m3/h and a temperature varying from 5 to 18°C.
  2. Spring, with a maximum flow of 50m3/h and a constant temperature 11°C ± 1°C.
  •  A hatchery with a capacity of 3 million eggs instantaneous hatching
  • 156 indoor nursery tanks (250 l to 400 l) for testing the early stages
  • 156 outdoor tanks (2 m3). 70 tanks have individual oxygen control and 42 have photoperiod control
  • A recirculated water platform (10 tanks of 6 m3) equipped with fecal-trap, with a filtration system (drum filter 30μ, UV) and a biological filter. This platform can operate in total or partial recirculation of water source or river.
  • A platform of 26 circular tanks of 28m3 used for broodstock maintenance
  • A behavioural study room with 32 tanks of 500 litres and 16 video cameras
  • A wet laboratory for sampling and measurement of live fish
  • An experimental processing/smoking unit with individual data acquisition on morphometry, yields, physiological & quality traits, and processing of samples for sensory evaluation.
  • PEIMA also has a world unique collection of farmed trout with selection and maintenance of trout lines with original characteristics like growth, sex-ratio, fat content, spawning date, adaptation to plant-based diets, disease resistance, including 20 isogenic lines of rainbow trout. Specifically, the available biological material includes:
  1. Five strains of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) distinguished by their dates of egg-laying, of which one species is Golden (dominant albinism)
  2. Two strains of rainbow trout diverging in muscle-fat content (7th generation of selection)
  3. Three strains of brown trout (Salmo trutta), of which one has been selected for the speed of growth (9th generation of selection under way)
  4. One strain selected for its ability to ingest plant-based feed (3rd generation of selection under way)
  5. Twenty strains of homozygous rainbow trout
  6. One strain of YY males and one line of neo-males (XX)
  • They are all available for TNA, under a collaboration agreement in the case of isogenic lines.
  • A cold water aquaponics unit may also be made available

Services currently offered by the infrastructure

PEIMA provides an experimental platform for fresh water studies throughout the whole life cycle of salmonids. All experimental animals are from well characterized genetic lines, including highly variable populations with different spawning dates, isogenic clonal lines and lines selected for specific traits (growth, muscle fat, dominant albinism). Production of triploid and/or monosex fish is available on request. Usual protocols are in all fields of physiology, genetics and nutrition, interactions between those, and their effects on product quality.
INRA-PEIMA is currently used as a research infrastructure by several remote laboratories from INRA (physiology, genetics, nutrition) and other French institutes and universities. It has also hosted many experiments from private companies.
In addition to the above, technical support for daily experimental work and technical help for samplings will be provided to all users. For specific needs, INRA scientists using the infrastructures (genetics, nutrition, physiology, pathology) will assist users for experimental design and data interpretation.

Modality of access

NRA-PEIMA will carry out experiments for potential users and provide physical access to its facilities during crucial periods of the running experiments. As the standard procedures and the general maintenance will be carried out by trained and experienced staff, each user is expected to stay 10 days, typically five days at the beginning of the experiment to finalize the technical protocol details and start the experiment and five days at the end of the experiment for final measurements and sampling.
PEIMA offers access to carry out fish trials with all tank types and water qualities available at the premises. Access will comprise the use of tanks including maintenance, water supply, daily feeding and husbandry of fish; manipulation, and sampling of fish. Access to all dry laboratory facilities and other infrastructural, logistical, technical and scientific support to external users is offered, as well as accommodation and office access with PC and international phone, fax and internet communications.
PEIMA provides standardized experimental protocols, documentation of results, and appropriate sampling and conservation of samples. Provision of experimental fish will exclusively be done using the collection of fish lines (rainbow trout, brown trout) available on site. Provision of specific genetic settings (different lines and crosses, triploids, monosex) should be agreed in advance. Use of rainbow trout isogenic lines is subject to prior agreement on research topics and IP rights.

Unit of Access

The unit of access is defined as one tank week; equalling the occupation of one standard fish holding unit (2 m3) for 7 days. Occupation of small (250 l) or large (> 2000 l) tanks will be assigned a fraction or a multiple, respectively, of the standard tank unit. One trial is expected to comprise 128 tank-weeks on average (i.e. 16 tanks for 8 weeks). There are 500 units of access are allocated over the life of the project. Included in the units of access are monitoring of water quality parameters (flow, temperature, O2, CO2, pH), sanitary costs if needed (veterinary and treatment), sanitary safety, oxygen, etc...