Monday, January 30th, 2023
Monday, January 30th, 2023

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Sportsmen Since 1967

Fish transport ban extended in northern Ohio due to VHS

Reynoldsburg, Ohio ’Äî The Ohio Department of Agriculture has
extended an emergency order that prohibits the intrastate
transportation, sale, or distribution of 28 fish species
susceptible to Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia, or VHS.

The initial order came down a year ago after an outbreak of VHS
on Lake Erie killed thousands of yellow perch and freshwater

’ÄúThe Ohio Department of Agriculture is charged with the
responsibility of protecting animals from potentially devastating
diseases,’Äù said ODA’ÄàDirector Robert Boggs said. ’ÄúThis
emergency order not only protects Ohio’Äôs fish population but
others in points beyond the state’Äôs borders.’Äù

VHS is a fish disease, which must be reported to the ODA under
state law. VHS was introduced into the wild fish population by an
invasive species. It is not harmful to humans or other animals.

Testing to date performed by ODA’Äôs Animal Disease Diagnostic
Laboratory has revealed that VHS is not present inland in Ohio. The
department will continue to test and monitor for the disease.

Ohio’Äôs ban prohibits intrastate distribution of
VHS-susceptible fish or eggs out of the area in Ohio north of U.S.
Highway 6 from the Indiana border to the intersection of U.S.
Highway 6 and Interstate 90 near Fremont, continuing on Interstate
90 to the Pennsylvania border. This also includes the Sandusky
River south of U.S. Highway 6 to the Ballville dam.

VHS-susceptible fish include: black crappies, bluegills,
bluntnose minnows, brown bullheads, brown trout, burbot, channel
catfish, chinook salmon, emerald shiners, freshwater drum, gizzard
shad, lake whitefish, largemouth bass, muskellunge, shorthead
redhorse, northern pike, pumpkinseeds, rainbow trout, rock bass,
round goby, silver redhorse, smallmouth bass, spottail shiner,
trout-perch, walleyes, white bass, white perch, and yellow

The prohibition is in effect in Ohio until the U.S. Department
of Agriculture’Äôs division of Animal and Plant Health Inspection
Service releases its embargo and prohibition of the movement of
live VHS susceptible fish. The prohibition does not apply to live
fish or eggs removed directly from production facilities that have
tested negative for VHS. It also excludes live fish or eggs that
are being transported for use by research scientists in closed
research facilities with diagnostic laboratories.

The order will not affect the Division of Wildlife’Äôs fish
stocking efforts this spring, said fisheries administrator Ray

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