Thursday, July 19, 2007

Fish Tanked

Viral Hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) continues to take its toll across the Great Lakes Region. Newswise is reporting that numbers of native muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) in the St. Lawrence River have plummeted over the past four years, in part due to VHS. Back in 2003, scientists at the State University of New York (SUNY), who have been monitoring muskellunge populations, caught more than 40 of the fish. This year, they've only caught four, and an investigation into the dozen or so dead fish collected in 2006 indicated several had been killed by the effects of VHS. Unfortunately most of those dead muskellunge were large mature females, which doesn't bode well for the species as a whole.

Click over to the news story to check out a video explaining VHS and showing the SUNY scientists at work. Thanks to budak for sending in a link to this story.

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