System for real-time monitoring of etho-physiological parameters in crayfish

Biomonitoring system for registration of crayfish cardiac and locomotor activity.


Examination of natural stimuli is of big use for etho-ecological investigations, where crayfish feeding, reproductive, defensive capacities in stressful conditions can be better understood. Testing chemical compounds, appropriateness of crayfish for serving as biomonitors at water treatment and supply facilities can be evaluated.


In this system, unit for registration of heart rate is coupled with unit for tracking of movement. Registration of cardiac activity is noninvasive sensor aided, which operation is based on a method of measuring changes of a volume of a cardiac muscle during its contractions (Depledge 1984). Tracking of motion is video camera aided. Assessment of movement is based on a principle of evaluation of background changes in a series of images, so that the present position of crayfish is detected. Cardio-locomotor functions are simultaneously registered in one data file, where frequency of the heartbeat and motor activity/inactivity appears in an adjacent data cells. Due to such combination, it is possible to eliminate impact of crayfish movement on its cardiac activity when analyzing the heart rate changes caused by ambient disruptions.

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System description

Present system is comprised of 12 tanks to monitor 12 animals simultaneously. Each crayfish carries the noninvasive sensor for registration of cardiac activity. Each tank is equipped with a shelter for crayfish security. Set of 3 tanks is combined into separate recirculation circuit and is four time replicated. Each 6 tanks are run by 1 video camera, however locomotor activity of each crayfish is individually registered The system is equipped by the peristaltic pump enabling to dose out the treatments at a very low rates, to avoid crayfish disturbance. The system is equipped with an automatic illumination system with the possibility of keeping any necessary light regime.

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What is recovery?

Laboratory or industrial monitoring of water pollution - e.g. disinfectants, soil fertilizers, etc.

What we offer?

We offer the license to the patent or manufacture and install the entire facility.

License owner: University of South Bohemia, Faculty of Fisheries and Protection of Waters

Contact person:

RNDr. Růžena Štemberková

Mobile: +420 702 027 182

E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.