Luc Maertens

Summarized research career:     
From 1978 till 1987: junior researcher at the Research Institute for small Stock Husbandry, Merelbeke.
In 1987: PhD at the University of Ghent. Title: Energy evaluation of raw materials for rabbits and estimation methods”. 
From than off engaged as a fix staff member of the Agricultural Research Centre Ghent
In 1989: promotion till senior researcher, responsible for the Rabbit Research Department
In 2006: Head of rabbit and poultry research at the Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO) at Melle (Belgium)
Doctor Honorus Causa: by the University of Kaposvar (Hungary) in September 2006

International functions:    

  • President of the World Rabbit Science Association (1996-2000), Treasurer  between 2004-2016.
  • Sub-coordinator of the granted Concerted Action FAIR 3 PL96 1651: “European Harmonisation of Methods for Rabbit Feed Evaluation”. Collaboration with INRA-Toulouse (co-ordinator) and the Universities of Padou, Madrid, Valencia en Lisbon during the period 1997-2002.
  • Applicant and Chairperson of the EC-COST 848 Action (2000-2005): “Multi-facetted research in rabbits: a model to develop a healthy and safe production in respect with animal welfare”.  Responsible for the co-ordination of this granted Action including 14 countries.
  • Member of the EFSA Scientific Panel on Animal Health and Welfare on request from the Commission related to “The impact of the current housing and husbandry systems on the health and welfare of farmed domestic rabbits”: 2003-2005 
  • Associate Editor of the “World Rabbit Science Journal”: 2000-2014
  • Section Editor of the journal “Animal” : 2010-2015
  • Member of the Advisory Board of the Italian Journal of Animal Science
  • Invited lecturer in Italy, Spain, Hungary, France, Germany, Portugal, The Netherlands, Poland, Slovenia, Mexico, USA, China and Indonesia
  • Invited key note speaker at different congresses: recently
  • 2013: 11th World Conference on Animal Production (Beijing, China): “  European management and feeding strategies to improve rabbit gut health “.
  • 2014: Annual meeting of the French GFPC group (Paris, France): L'efficacité alimentaire en système cunicole”. 
  • 2015:  LNB Poultry Congress in Lodz (Poland): “Etiology and impact of nutrition and management on the occurrence and severity of foot pad dermatitis in broilers”                  
  • 2016: 11th World Rabbit Congress (Qingdai, China): “Feed efficiency in rabbit production: nutritional, tecnico-economical and environmental aspects” 
  • Guest professor at Universities in Italy, Hungary, The Netherlands, Germany and Belgium


  • Author or co-author of over 400 scientific publications concerning rabbit and poultry nutrition, reproduction and management (About 1/3 of them in refereed journals, 1/3 in proceedings of Intern. congresses and 1/3 in applied journals and national congresses).
  • Author of chapters in different International books: e.g. 
  • The Nutrition of the Rabbit (CABI publishing, UK, 1998 and 2010); 
  • Livestock Feeds and Feeding (Prentice Hall, USA, 2002 and 2010); 
  • Handbuch zur Kaninchenfleischgewinnung (Oertel + Spörer GMBH, Germany, 1998).
  • Editor of the book “Recent Advances in Rabbit Sciences”, 2006. ILVO & COST publication, 300p.