When the Canadian Council on Animal Care was established in 1968, the Council, together with representatives from the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association in concert with the Youth Science Foundation, recognized the importance of well-conceived science fair projects involving live animals. It was recognized as well that poor science encouraged poor attitudes toward the animals involved, as well as a misunderstanding of scientific investigation. Numerous schemes were tried in an effort to ensure development of proper scientific investigational attitudes as well as a respect for living things. These will be discussed, outlining where such schemes failed.
In May, 1975, Regulations for Animal Experimentation in Science Fairs in Canada were adopted by the regional representatives at the Canada-wide Science Fair in Jonquiere, Quebec. These regulations state that vertebrate animals are not to be used in experiments for projects for Science Fairs, with the following exceptions:
A Observations of normal living patterns of wild animals in the free living state or in zoological parks, gardens or aquaria.
B. Observations of normal living patterns of pets, fish or domestic animals.
Since these regulations were adopted, the biological exhibits have increased and have shown significant improvements in scientific input involving increased numbers of bacteria, fungi, cells, sera and tissue culture. The requirement for strict supervision because of possible abuses has decreased, thus lessening the anxiety and frustration of the regional science fair committees.
Roswell, H.C. (1980). High school science fairs: Evaluation of live animal experimentation--The Canadian experience. In H. McGiffin & N. Brownley (Eds.), Animals in education: Use of animals in high school biology classes and science fairs (pp. 85-98). Washington, DC: The Institute for the Study of Animal Problems.