Southwestern Native Aquatic Resource
and Recovery Center
Southwest Region

Southwestern Fish Health Unit

The Southwestern Native Aquatic Resources & Recovery Center works with partners to restore and maintain fish and other aquatic resources at self-sustaining levels and supports Federal mitigation programs.

The Fish Health Laboratory plays a major role in monitoring, evaluating, and protecting the health of fish and other aquatic animals. The Lab is responsible for aquatic animal pathogen testing and health concerns. Annual fish health inspections are conducted on federal, state, tribal, and partner hatcheries throughout Region 2 (Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona). The Lab provides a wide range of diagnostic services which aide in the identification and treatment of diseases.

The Fish Health Laboratory participates in Spring Virema of Carp Virus (SVCV) and Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia Virus (VHS) surveillance in Southwestern waters.

The Fish Health Laboratory evaluates tests and utilizes new or modified aquatic animal pathogen detection methods and technology. The Lab also oversees Investigational New Animal Drug (INAD) studies conducted at Region 2 Fish Hatcheries.

Staff members serve on the Aquatic Animal Health Policy revision committee, the Standard Procedures for Aquatic Animal Health Inspections revision committee, and the National Wild Fish Health Survey review committee. The Lab also works with Recovery programs, providing recommendations on aquatic animal health components for aquatic threatened and endangered species Recovery plans.

Under the guidelines of the Service’s National Wild Fish Health Survey (NWFHS), initiated in 1997, the Laboratory conducts fish health inspections and diagnostic examinations of wild fish populations of threatened and endangered species, sport fish, and native fish.

Assay results are provided to resource managers and are available on a FWS supported web-site:

For additional information, please contact Martha Keller, DVM, MS, at (575) 734-5910 ext. 124.

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Last updated: November 28, 2017