This book is devoted to the welfare of invertebrates, which make up 99% of animal species on earth. Addressing animal welfare, we do not often think of invertebrates; in fact we seldom consider them to be deserving of welfare evaluation. And yet we should. Welfare is a broad concern for any animal that we house, control or utilize – and we utilize invertebrates a lot. The Authors start with an emphasis on the values of non-vertebrate animals and discuss the need for a book on the present topic. The following chapters focus on specific taxa, tackling questions that are most appropriate to each one. What is pain in crustaceans, and how might we prevent it? How do we ensure that octopuses are not bored? What do bees need to thrive, pollinate our plants and give us honey? Since invertebrates have distinct personalities and some social animals have group personalities, how do we consider this? And, as in the European Union’s application of welfare consideration to cephalopods, how do the practical regulatory issues play out?
We have previously relegated invertebrates to the category ‘things’ and did not worry about their treatment. New research suggest that some invertebrates such as cephalopods and crustaceans can have pain and suffering, might also have consciousness and awareness. Also, good welfare is going to mean different things to spiders, bees, corals, etc. This book is taking animal welfare in a very different direction. Academics and students of animal welfare science, those who keep invertebrates for scientific research or in service to the goals of humans, as well as philosophers will find this work thought-provoking, instructive and informative.