Undercurrent News, 29 Oct 2013: Ameoba gill disease transmitter suspected at Bakkafrost farm

Ameoba gill disease transmitter suspected at Bakkafrost farm

Undercurrent News, 29 Oct 2013

Authorities suspect they have detected the agent capable of causing ameoba gill disease (AGB) on a Bakkafrost farming site in the Faroe Islands.

The possible detection is not connected to any gill pathology nor mortality, and there is no impact on fish health or fish welfare, said the company, the Faroes’ biggest salmon producer.

Citing safety reasons, Bakkafrost said the harvest of the fish at the site will be intensified and a possible treatment with hydrogen peroxide will be considered to prevent proliferation and disease. The fish are at a harvestable size and were, prior to this detection, planned to be harvested from October 2013.

The site in question has about 1.1 million fish, with an average weight of about 6 kilos and so is ready for harvesting.

PCR analysis carried out by the Faroese food- and veterinary authorities on routine samples from the Bakkafrost farming site in Fuglafjordur resulted in suspicions of the presence of Neoparamoeba perurans, the agent known to be able to cause AGD.

Bakkafrost and the other farmers in the Faroe Islands work with the Faroese Food- and veterinary authority to avoid the N.perurans moving to other farming sites. In recent years, the farming companies and the authorities have put a lot of work into maintaining the good biological status in the Faroe Islands, Bakkafrost said in a statement.

“The intention is to manage the risks in a way which creates a good biological environment for the salmon. Our hope and expectation is that these routine analyses, together with our preventative procedures, will reveal one of the strengths of the Faroese veterinary model.”

Surveillance tests for the N. perurans have been performed over the last year in sea sites in the Faroes, all with negative results.


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