Outbreak of BKD on UK fih farm, VHS confirmed on trout farm
Bacterial Kidney Disease has been confirmed in a trout farm in Devon; agency confirms Viral Haemorrhagic Septicaemia sample as positive
The presence of Bacterial Kidney Disease (BKD) has been confirmed in a trout farm in Devon.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has issued an Order prohibiting all movements of fish to and from the infected Fish Farm and Fishery.
The disease was found in a trout sample during a routine fish health-monitoring visit to the farm. Fish Health Inspectors are currently examining the source of the outbreak and investigations are ongoing. Whilst the disease is considered serious and notifiable under EU law, it is not widespread in Great Britain and occurs only sporadically.
Fish infected with BKD may display a number of characteristics including protruding eyes, a swollen abdomen, pale anaemic gills and haemorrhaging at the base of the gills.
BKD can cause large numbers of mortalities in both farmed and wild salmon and trout. It was first recognised in Atlantic salmon on the River Dee, Scotland in the 1930s and in 1976 there was the first notable case of BKD in farmed rainbow trout. Whilst the disease is considered serious and notifiable under EU law, it is not widespread in Great Britain and occurs only sporadically.
BKD has no implications for human health.
Viral haemorrhagic septicaemia update - virus detected in grayling sample
The National Control Centre at the Cefas Weymouth Laboratory has confirmed that viral haemorrhagic septicaemia (VHS) virus had been detected in a sample of grayling taken from the River Nidd below the outlet of the farm infected with the disease. The infected fish showed no clinical signs of the disease.
The discovery was made through comprehensive sampling. Cefas is continuing to test wild fish in the river, both below and above the infected farm to determine the extent of infection.
Although there is no scientific evidence that VHS infection causes significant disease outbreaks in wild freshwater fish stocks, any persisting infection in wild stocks could be a source of infection or re-infection for trout farms in the vicinity through VHS virus contamination of the river supply to the farms.
There have been no further cases of the disease on trout farms in the Ouse/Don catchments of North Yorkshire affected by the current case. The first round of testing on all farmed sites has returned negative results so far and is due to be completed later this week. A second round of testing began last week with results expected by the middle of July.
Results of the further testing will be made known when they have been completed. Fish farmers in the affected area and other stakeholders are being kept informed of the situation.
VHS has no implications for human health.
The sample was confirmed positive by the CEFAS National Control Centre on 19th June.
This is the first outbreak of VHS recorded in mainland Great Britain, although there was an outbreak of the marine form of the disease in farmed turbot in the Isle of Gigha in 1994.
Further information can be found on the Defra website
Defra's sister site, www.efishbusiness.co.uk also provides a wealth of information on fish health matters.