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Oct 09 2011

UPDATE – Alexandra Morton on yellow salmon – DFO on IHN Virus

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UPDATE:
Here is an informed scientific opinion from Stewart Johnson DFO who graciously made time to phone and e-mail me about the IHN Virus testing. He did that to help me understand why the Middle Shuswap salmon were suffering from Pre-spawn mortality and to help me understand how the two might be related. Mr. Johnson was not aware of the yellow fish when he called me last Thursday. Thank you Mr.Stewart Johnson.

From DFO
The signs of IHN include: fish becoming lethargic, darkening of skin, pale gills, fluids within the body cavity and small areas of haemorrhage through the skin. Internal organs appear pale coloured with small areas of bleeding on their surfaces. I have not heard of any relationship between IHN and jaundice like signs, or lesions in the brain in any salmon species. As noted above lesions can form in the liver.

Over the years DFO has received samples of different species of wild salmon that show signs of jaundice (some have been very yellow). These samples have come from many different areas of BC, from fresh and salt water and include a variety of species. I would suspect that if the liver becomes damaged that jaundice could develop. I don’t know how common it is in wild fish. Pink salmon do take on a yellowish green color at spawning, so unless the fish is markedly yellow this situation would likely go unreported.

Read Alexandera Morton’s letter to DFO:

Dear Dr. Richards: I am writing to ask for your progress report on the thousands of silver-bright sockeye and now Coho that are floating dead down the Fraser River…

Considering what has been going on in the Chile salmon farms – it doesn’t take a genius or a biologist to ask DFO why are our salmon yellow? Look at the pictures – is that just rotting flesh from a dying salmon heading up river to spawn?

http://salmonguy.org

It looks more like a disease from a virus that our wild sockeye salmon carry IHNV (v for virus). Has the virus spread to pink salmon now? DFO should be checking these fish because DFO told me that the IHN Virus is only found in Sockeye but maybe it’s the ISA virus that was found in Chile’s salmon farms :

http://aqua.merck-animal-health.com/news/2007-11-22.aspx

“The fish showed the classical external and internal signs of ISA such as pale gills, skin petechiae and hemorrhages, anemia, ascites, congestion and enlargement of liver and spleen. Presence of hemorrhagic ascites in the abdominal cavity and pericardium was also observed. Tissue samples taken for histopathology revealed diffuse hemorrhagic necrosis in the tissues and was highly suspicious for ISAV infection”

They are talking about Farmed Salmon in Chile. This disease is not being taken seriously by the people commenting on this post. I talked to a DFO scientist on Thursday – DFO knows our salmon carry the IHNVirus – he told me that they carry the virus and the disease develops when the salmon are stressed from warm water, pollution or lack of food.

Whether the salmon farms catch it or spread it – is not really the point – what matters is that we limit every potential virus carrier when and where we can, because our wild salmon are very important to BC.

That means salmon farms – because they can be operated in containment and because they stress out wild salmon with their tons of fish poop and because farms can be regulated right out of the ocean where other things like climate change can’t be fixed by DFO.

read here
http://www.thefishsite.com/fishnews/12514/environmental-scandal-in-chile

“… salmon farms… [have] devastating impacts on the region’s entire ecosystem – not least because Atlantic salmon is an alien species in Chile, introduces diseases and therefore poses an additional risk to already threatened native species.”

I have seen lots of dead salmon and I never saw a bright yellow salmon before – they usually go grey… People who associate disease with salmon farms have looked at what happened in Chile – it’s just logic that makes you want to ask if salmon farms play a part in disease in our wild salmon.

We can’t stop the disease – but we can limit the places where the disease can grow.

DFO says that only Sockeye have the IHN virus/isease – so has it spread to pink salmon now? We know Atlantic salmon have ISA virus/disease because it’s been reported in Chile.

People like me, who use their real name and ask questions are not against fish farms – we just want fish farming on land, like every other farm operation.

1 comment

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  1. Priscilla Judd

    UPDATE:
    Here is an informed scientific opinion from Stewart Johnson DFO who graciously made time to phone and e-mail me about the IHN Virus testing. He did that to help me understand why the Middle Shuswap salmon were suffering from Pre-spawn mortality and to help me understand how the two might be related. Mr. Johnson was not aware of the yellow fish when he called me last Thursday. Thank you Mr.Stewart Johnson.

    From DFO
    The signs of IHN include: fish becoming lethargic, darkening of skin, pale gills, fluids within the body cavity and small areas of haemorrhage through the skin. Internal organs appear pale coloured with small areas of bleeding on their surfaces. I have not heard of any relationship between IHN and jaundice like signs, or lesions in the brain in any salmon species. As noted above lesions can form in the liver.

    Over the years DFO has received samples of different species of wild salmon that show signs of jaundice (some have been very yellow). These samples have come from many different areas of BC, from fresh and salt water and include a variety of species. I would suspect that if the liver becomes damaged that jaundice could develop. I don’t know how common it is in wild fish. Pink salmon do take on a yellowish green color at spawning, so unless the fish is markedly yellow this situation would likely go unreported.

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  1. » theXpress

    […] IHN Virus and photos with DFO info (on my blog) […]

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