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School of Biological and Behavioural Sciences

Zebrafish facility

The zebrafish (Daniorerio) is an established vertebrate model species used to explore development and gene function.

With the increase in use of zebrafish at Queen Mary since 2005 our facility has been expanding steadily. We currently house a breeding room, behavioural observation room, a larger aquarium housing a nursery area and nine stand-alone units (Aquatic Habitats) with a total capacity to hold over 8000 fish.

Services and equipment

Fish and embryo supply


The zebrafish facility within the School of Biological and Behavioural Sciences at QMUL is dedicated to the maintenance of wild type, mutant and transgenic stock lines (for available lines please contact facility manager).

We provide zebrafish embryos as well as adults for your experimental needs subject to home office guidelines. We can accommodate specific requirements, giving advice on experimental design and guidance regarding current home office guidelines. Please refer to our Zebrafish Facility - Service Level Agreement [PDF 53KB].

All established lines are from bleached embryos.

The zebrafish at Queen Mary are fed 3 times a day. This feeding regime includes various dry flake food , and two courses of 48 hour old Artemia naupili. Nursery fry are fed on a ZM powder and live food (Artemia) diet.

Tank leasing


Investigators wishing to house their fish in the Queen Mary facility may rent any of three different size tanks – 1.5 litres, 3 litres, or 10 litres housed in stand-alone units (Aquatic Habitats) available on a first come first serve basis. Larger tanks of 40 litres are also available for use.

The systems are maintained at a constant temperature of 28°C and water quality is regularly monitored. All systems are alarmed, and a maintenance person is on-call 24 hrs/day to ensure safe keeping of all fish. The facility is maintained by technicians skilled in zebrafish husbandry.

There are three photoperiod spaces available, some of which can be adjusted to fit your experimental schedule.All photoperiods within the Facility operate on a 14 hour light, 10 hour dark cycle.

Other services available

  • Fluorescence imagery
  • Micro-Injectors

Booking and fees

To book the zebrafish facility at Queen Mary, University of London, please complete an online order form.

The uses of zebrafish in the UK are covered by the Scientific Procedures Act (1986). Once five days old, a home office licence is required to cover all experiments and researchers.

There are a range of charges for using these facilities, depending on your relationship to the school.


FacilitySBBS User ChargeExternal User Charge
AHAB tank (per week) £1.30 £2
ZM tank (per week) £1.30 £2.40
Glass tank (per week) £1.60 £6.70
Fry growing (per week) £2 £3
Embryos - one batch (50 - 100) £5 £5
Embryo cleaning/sorting £5 £5
Fluorescence microscope use (half day) £2 £2

Note: Casper or Albino embryos incur an additional charge of £0.50. Email billing will be sent at the end of every month for facility usage.


Before booking, please check the calendars for embryo booking, behaviour room and microscope room availability.

Please book as far in advance as possible to guarantee availability:

  • Embryos must be booked three days in advance with an indication of the number (maximum of 300 eggs/day) and stage of eggs required, as well as fish strain
  • Fluorescence microscopes and injectors are available to be booked in morning or afternoon slots
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