Salmon virus not confirmed: DFO

The infectious salmon anemia virus (ISAV) has reportedly been found in a coho from Weaver Creek which flows into the Fraser River near Harrison Mills.

The infectious salmon anemia virus (ISAV) has reportedly been found in a coho from Weaver Creek which flows into the Fraser River near Harrison Mills.

According to a document obtained by opponents to commercial fish farms, the Weaver Creek coho tested positive for the virus, along with another from Rivers Inlet on B.C.’s central coast.

However, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency document goes on to say the positive ISAV detection is not confirmed and is “suspect” because of “chain of custody” issues.

But if the virus from fish farmed salmon has entered wild stocks, it could play havoc with B.C.’s salmon industry.

The virus reportedly caused $2 billion in damages to Chilean fish stocks.

Further tests to confirm the virus are underway and results are expected in the next four or five weeks, a federal fisheries spokesperson said Wednesday.

But fish-farm critics say they have lost confidence in the DFO, and fear the worst if the virus is loose in wild stocks.

“The name of the game is containment now,” said Ernie Crey, a local fisheries critic, because the virus can’t be destroyed and can mutate into other forms.

Crey said it is “folly” to leave regular testing of farmed salmon to companies.

“It’s a conflict of interest,” he said. “It should be done by the DFO or an independent lab.”

Dr. Alexandra Morton, who found the Weaver Creek coho, agreed with Crey’s call for independent testing.

“Salmon farms break the natural laws, and viruses, bacteria and parasites are the beneficiaries of the behaviour,” she wrote in an internet blog.

If viruses are allowed to flourish in fish farms, she said, “you get pestilence. There is no other outcome.”

Meanwhile, Federal fisheries minister Keith Ashfield is calling for public calm until the tests are finalized.

“Public debate and any forward action on this issue must be based on the best science,” he said.

rfreeman@theprogress.com

twitter.com/paperboy2

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A 60-unit apartment complex approved near downtown Chilliwack

City councillor noted that density adds to the livability of the downtown

UPDATE: Chilliwack poultry producer’s $130,000 fight with the CFIA earns him a red-tape award

Canadian Federation of Independent Business Paperweight Awards ‘honour’ government over-regulation

DNA confirms SUV struck and killed Abbotsford cyclist in 2015, court hears

Kerry Froese operated company that owned vehicle that struck and killed Ronald James Scott in 2015

Two men charged with first-degree murder in 2019 Surrey case

Two men charged with first-degree murder in killing of Andrew Baldwin, 30, in Surrey

Chilliwack average rents up, vacancy rate down

Local situation in the rental market mirrors the national picture according to CMHC

VIDEO: Canada’s first presumptive case of coronavirus officially confirmed

Both patient and wife arrived on a China Southern Airlines flight after having been to Wuhan

First-place Canucks beat Blues 3-1 for ninth straight home win

Miller nets pair as Vancouver defeats Cup champs

Swapping grape varieties can help winemakers adapt to climate change: UBC study

Report says 56% of wine-grape-growing regions would be lost if global climate warms by 2 C

Alberta premier wants feds to approve Teck mine for benefit of First Nations

Kenney: ‘Surely [reconciliation] means saying yes to economic development for First Nations people’

Police search for man who went missing from Vernon hotel

Jay Rosenberger, 38, was last seen Friday

NDP suggests easing secondary housing rules for B.C. farmland

Lana Popham proposes guest homes not just for relatives

After four sex assaults linked, RCMP ask women not to walk alone in Coquitlam park

Four sexual assaults took place in Glen Park over two months

BC Place lights up in purple and yellow to honour Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter and seven others were killed in a helicopter crash

Whistleblower says Iranian-Americans questioned at Peace Arch crossing were targeted

Immigration lawyer says response from Customs Border Protection is a ‘total cover up’

Most Read