gaseous filtration (such as with activated-charcoal filters) can be used but only in limited applications, provided that

  • Room air is mixed with at least 50% fresh air (that is, the supply air does not exceed 50% recycled air).

  • Husbandry practices, such as bedding-change and cage-washing frequency, and the preparation of recycled air used are sufficient to minimize toxic gases and odors.

  • Recycled air is returned only to the room or area from which it was generated, except if it comes from other than animal housing areas.

  • Recycled air is appropriately conditioned and mixed with sufficient fresh air to address the thermal and humidity requirements of animals in that space.

Frequent bedding changes and cage-cleaning coupled with husbandry practices, such as low animal density within the room and lower environmental temperature and humidity, can also reduce the concentration of toxic or odor-causing gases in animal-room air. Treatment of recycled air for either particulate or gaseous contaminants is expensive and can be rendered ineffective by improper or insufficient maintenance of filtration systems. These systems should be properly maintained and monitored appropriately to maximize their effectiveness.

The successful operation of any HVAC system requires regular maintenance and evaluation, including measurement of its function at the level of the secondary enclosure. Such measurements should include supply-and exhaust-air volumes, as well as static-pressure differentials, where applicable.


Light can affect the physiology, morphology, and behavior of various animals (Brainard and others 1986; Erkert and Grober 1986; Newbold and others 1991; Tucker and others 1984). Potential photostressors include inappropriate photoperiod, photointensity, and spectral quality of the light (Stoskopf 1983). Numerous factors can affect animals' needs for light and should be considered when an appropriate illumination level is being established for an animal holding room. These include light intensity, duration of exposure, wavelength of light, light history of the animal, pigmentation of the animal, time of light exposure during the circadian cycle, body temperature, hormonal status, age, species, sex, and stock or strain of animal (Brainard 1989; Duncan and O'Steen 1985; O'Steen 1980; Saltarelli and Coppola 1979; Semple-Rowland and Dawson 1987; Wax 1977).

In general, lighting should be diffused throughout an animal holding area and provide sufficient illumination for the well-being of the animals and to allow good housekeeping practices, adequate inspection of animals—including the bottom-most cages in racks—and safe working conditions for personnel. Light in

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