Fisheries, Midwest Region
Conserving the Nature of America

Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia

The strain of the VHS virus found in the Great Lakes is more of a concern since it affects a much wider range of fish species, including many sport fish species such as muskie, bass, perch and walleye.  Another concern is that it affects several baitfish species such as emerald shiners and is easily spread by infected baitfish.

The US Fish and Wildlife Service is assisting the Great Lakes states in monitoring the distribution of this virus through its wild fish health assessment program.  In 2008, the first discovery of this strain of the VHS virus was found outside the Great Lakes watershed when a positive sample was found in muskie ovarian fluids from spawning fish in Clearfork Reservoir in Central Ohio.