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Clayoquot Salmon Farm Reports Outbreak of IHN Virus

Fatal Salmon Virus Outbreak in Clayoquot UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
Tofino BC — Mainstream Canada, a Norwegian-owned company, has reported an outbreak of Infectious Haematopoietic Necrosis virus (IHN) on one of their open net-cage salmon farms in Clayoquot Sound. 
The farm, one of 20 sites in the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, is located at the entrance to a provincial park that encompasses a fjord, the Megin River estuary, old-growth Sitka spruce forests and salmon spawning habitat.
IHN is endemic to wild Pacific fish, and at low concentrations is not deadly to them. However salmon farms amplify diseases like this, much like in a crowded hospital, where pathogens which are normally not an issue can become deadly.

Dr. Kristi Miller, Head of the Molecular Genetics section at the Pacific Biological Station, Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), found Infectious Salmon Anemia Virus (ISAv) and Piscine reovirus (PRV) on 2 other Clayoquot Sound salmon farms late last year. Both viruses are of European origin and deadly to wild salmon. These farms were not culled and no further testing has taken place.
Friends of Clayoquot Sound campaigner Bonny Glambeck said, “Despite the abundance of pristine salmon habitat, Clayoquot's salmon runs are in dramatic decline, with some runs now being counted in the tens, rather than in the tens of thousands.”
 “Mainstream has applied for a new salmon feedlot to be located at Plover Point along the shore of Meares Island near Tofino. With the Cohen Commission of Inquiry into the Decline of Fraser River Sockeye Salmon report not due out until September 30, and these deadly viruses present here in the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Reserve, this is not the time to be expanding this industry.”
For immediate release — 17 May 2012

The Friends of Clayoquot Sound, founded in 1979, is an environmental organization with a mandate to protect the ancient temperate rainforest and marine environments of Clayoquot Sound.

For more information please contact:
Bonny Glambeck   cell 250 726 5100
Campaigns Director
Friends of Clayoquot Sound
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  
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