Canadian salmon virus scandal

This video says about itself:

Since an infectious salmon virus emerged two years ago, salmon production in this small Chilean port has seen a loss of six thousand jobs.

The virus known as ISA, is like a deadly flu or cold for the most common Salar species, or Atlantic salmon.

Last year, salmon farmers harvested fish early to avoid the virus. This created record-breaking exports, but this year a fall of thirty percent in exports is expected, with no recovery for the next two years.

From the Canadian Press:

Minister takes heat for salmon virus comments

March 9, 2012 – 4:28am

Nova Scotia’s fisheries minister is facing sharp criticism for suggesting Thursday that a recent viral outbreak at a large fish farm is just a routine part of the aquaculture business.

Asked about the outbreak of infectious salmon anemia at a Cooke Aquaculture operation in Shelburne Harbour, Sterling Belliveau said: “It’s a normal business day, and these particular incidents are being managed in an appropriate fashion.”

Rob Johnson, aquaculture co-ordinator for the Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre, said Belliveau’s comments show he’s ill-informed and irresponsible.

“That’s reprehensible,” Johnson said in an interview. “We’ve seen this virus break out in New Brunswick, it’s wiped out the industry in Chile and it’s a tremendous threat to the marine ecosystem.”

Johnson said the virus could be spread to wild Atlantic salmon, which are already an endangered species.

“This is yet another one that we should be extra vigilant against it,” he said. “If (Belliveau) is making light of it by suggesting this is normal business activity, he’s ill-informed.”

Johnson also said industrial fish farms pose a threat to the lobster fishery because they attract parasitic sea lice.

Infectious salmon anemia first appeared at fish farms in Norway almost two decades ago, then in New Brunswick and Scotland.

In the late 1990s, New Brunswick salmon farmers slaughtered more than a million fish amid an outbreak. The federal government paid out tens of millions of dollars to settle compensation claims.

The virus was discovered in farmed Nova Scotia salmon as early as 1999, but in much smaller numbers.

The virus can kill up to 90 per cent of the salmon it infects, depending on the strain. It attacks the kidneys of salmon and causes discolouration.

Cooke Aquaculture, based in Blacks Harbour, N.B., said last Friday it had destroyed all the salmon in two underwater cages in Shelburne Harbour after routine testing found suspected cases of infectious salmon anemia on Feb. 10.

Spokeswoman Nell Halse said salmon in a third cage tested positive this week and they, too, will be killed and shipped to a secure compost facility. She would not say how many fish are in each cage, but she said the facility has about 20 cages.

All three cages will remain empty until all of the salmon at the farm are harvested, she said.

Salmon virus hits Canadian supermarkets. Norwegian disease found in 44 of 45 Vancouver-bought fish. Read more here.

Three Decades of Farmed Escapees in the Wild: A Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Atlantic Salmon Population Genetic Structure throughout Norway: here.

Sea lice become resistant to pesticide on salmon farms: here.

The Netherlands: 11 firms fined for failing to act on infected salmon: here.

3 thoughts on “Canadian salmon virus scandal

  1. Pingback: Saving salmon fisheries by dumping iron? | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Swedish dioxin salmon scandal | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Danish soldiers want to get out of re-started Iraq war | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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