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Red Skin Disease

Last year we reported that there were accounts of small numbers of salmon caught in rivers across Europe, including Scotland, all exhibiting signs of a severe red rash and at times fungal infections (see here). It has been brought to our attention that this Red Skin Disease has reappeared in some areas. Following a major workshop in Norway last autumn, various laboratories have agreed to cooperate in tracing outbreaks of the disease and further analysing samples provided. Despite extensive investigations undertaken last year on retrieved specimens by the various fish health authorities, no attributable cause from an infectious agent has been established to date.

We ask that, when returning to the river bank, individuals stay vigilant and keep an eye out for any fish showing symptoms. If you do catch one of these fish, please do not remove it from the water and handle it as little as possible when removing the hook. Photograph the fish if you can and report the exact location of capture as soon as possible to the authorities (contact information provided below). Geographical coordinates for the position of capture from your smart phone would be particularly useful. It is also advised to follow normal biosecurity protocols and disinfect your fishing tackle, landing net, waders and fishing jacket if they have come into contact with the fish.

At the moment this is for information only and we will share more news as it becomes available.

The contact numbers for the various Fish Health Inspectors and organisations are:

Ireland – Marine Institute (Fish Health), https://www.marine.ie/Home/site-area/areas-activity/fish-health/fish-health  Tel: (+) 353 91387200

Scotland – Marine Scotland Fish Health Inspectorate, https://www2.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Fish-Shellfish/FHI/Personnel  Tel: 0131 244 3498

England and Wales – Fish Health Inspectorate, https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/fish-health-inspectorate Tel: 01305 206700

Northern Ireland – DAERA Northern Ireland, https://www.daera-ni.gov.uk/articles/northern-ireland-disease-status-and-designation-notices Tel: 028 44 618090

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