Wild salmon likely cause of fish farm virus: experts

CTV News
June 11, 2012

Fisheries experts say they believe wild salmon are the cause of a virus outbreak on a Vancouver Island fish farm.

The outbreak of the IHN virus at Mainstream Canada's Dixon Bay farm near Tofino has led to the cull of more than half-a-million salmon.

An official at the Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences in Campbell River says research suggests the virus was carried by sockeye salmon migrating into the area.

Sonja Saksida says the IHN outbreak appears to be a reversal of an argument against the industry raised by critics.

Those critics have long feared that Atlantic salmon raised in open-net cages in the ocean can pass on diseases to wild salmon.

Gary Marty, a veterinarian and fish pathologist for B.C.'s Ministry of Agriculture, says wild Pacific salmon have built up a resistance to the virus, but Atlantic salmon have not.

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Posted June 11th, 2012