Reading West M.P Martin Salter, who is also Labour’s Parliamentary Spokesman for Angling has today secured an assurance from the government that the deadly Koi Herpes Virus (KHV) is to be designated a notifiable disease.
This follows at least six outbreaks of KHV in recent weeks in fisheries in the South, East and
Martin Salter raised the issue in the Commons at DEFRA questions and linked the proposed cut of £400,000 in the Environment Agency fisheries budget to the need to take action to try and prevent the spread of the KHV virus.
In his question Martin Salter said:
“The Minister will be aware that this wholly unwelcome cut of £400,000 in the Fisheries budget threatens to adversely affect the ability of the Environment Agency to combat the spread of lethal fish diseases such as the Koi Herpes Virus, several outbreaks of which have recently occurred in the
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In reply Fisheries Minister Ben Bradshaw acknowledged the serious threat posed by the virus and confirmed for the first time that the government intends to make KHV a notifiable disease. This will require fishery owners to report suspected KHV mortalities in their waters.
Martin Salter said:
“I’m delighted that Ben Bradshaw has listened to
The announcement was welcomed by both ECHO and the Fisheries Angling Conservation Trust (FACT).
A representative from ECHO said:
“KHV is potentially the biggest threat to our country’s carp stocks in recent times. ECHO has worked for numerous years to highlight this deadly disease among fisheries and the angling world.
The impact of this virus on the industry could be huge and the news that it is to be made notifiable is a giant step forward in maintaining our fisheries health status.
We urge all relevant government agencies to achieve the notifiable status of KHV in as short a timescale as is humanly possible”.