June 12th, 2024

A list of facts about whirling disease found in some national park waterways in B.C.

By The Canadian Press on October 27, 2023.

Two fish fry, one healthy on top the other below is infected with whirling disease in this undated photo supplied by Parks Canada. Parks Canada officials have shut down waterbodies in British Columbia's Yoho and Kootenay national parks after the discovery of whirling disease that can "decimate" trout, salmon and whitefish population. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Parks Canada **MANDATORY CREDIT**

VANCOUVER – Parks Canada officials have shut down waterbodies in British Columbia’s Yoho and Kootenay national parks after the discovery of whirling disease. Here are some facts about the disease:

– Species susceptible to the disease include cutthroat, rainbow, bull, brown and brook trout, coho, sockeye, chinook and Atlantic salmon and the mountain whitefish.

– The disease is especially deadly for young finfish, with the overall death rate of fry and fingerlings reaching up to 90 per cent.

– Affected fish may whirl in their swimming patterns, they have skeletal deformities and their tail may appear dark.

– It was first found in Alberta waterbodies,and Parks Canada officials say the mostly likely cause of the spread to B.C. was through humans.

– It is caused by a microscopic parasite spread through contact with a fish and a freshwater worm.

– People can spread whirling disease by moving infected live or dead fish, infected worms, contaminated equipment or water.

– It does not pose a risk to human health.

– There is no treatment for whirling disease.

Source: Government of Canada.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 27, 2023.

Share this story:

12
-11
Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments