- Created: 15 August 2011
Fish virus spread by ornamental fish in the U.S.A.
The critical importance of biosecurity was highlighted in the international press recently with the news that a sudden fish kill of 300-500 Common Carp in Kent Lake, Michigan, U.S.A. was due to a virus passed on from the release or escape of infected ornamental fish (4th August 2011). It is suspected that the virus was the koi herpes virus (KHV), which had hitherto never been recorded in Michigan.
KHV affects Koi, goldfish and common carp. In Ireland a national surveillance program is currently being carried out by the Marine Institute, in conjunction with Inland Fisheries Ireland, to establish if the virus is present in Ireland. Anglers and all waterways users are reminded that infected equipment, live fish and boat bilges full of water can all become vectors of diseases such as KHV. Good practise dictates that live fish should never be transferred between watercourses, water should be emptied from boats upon leaving a boat launch and equipment and clothing should be cleaned and disinfected. These preventative measures are vital to the protection of our fisheries and waterways. For more information on recommended biosecurity procedures check out the Inland Fisheries Ireland website.