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"Aquaculture, not the Internet, represents the most promising investment opportunity of the 21st Century."

- Peter Drucker, Management Expert & Economist


Water hardness and Flavobacterial diseases of freshwater fishes

There are three Flavobacterium spp. that are primary pathogens to freshwater hatchery-reared and wild fish populations: Flavobacterium columnare, the cause of columnaris disease, Flavobacterium branchiophilum, the cause of bacterial gill disease, and Flavobacterium psychrophilum, the cause of bacterial coldwater disease. Combined, the diseases and mortality caused by these pathogens constitutes one of the broadest host- and geographic ranges of any of the bacterial pathogens to fishes. Fish pathogenic Flavobacterium spp. are presumed ubiquitous in temperate freshwater aquatic environments and occur in water temperatures ranging from just above freezing (F. psychrophilum) to 30o C and above (F. columnare). Most, if not all cultured freshwater fish species may be affected by at least one of these pathogens. Other members of the Family Flavobacteriacea have been associated with diseases of fishes. For example, Chryseobacterium piscicola is an emerging pathogen of Flavobacteriaceae having been reported from Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) Columnaris disease, affects many cool- and warmwater fish species, typically in warm waters at 20-25oC and above; however, it is not unusual to diagnose columnaris disease in fish, including trout species, in water as cool as 12-14oC. Many cultured and free-ranging fish species are considered at risk for infection and possible disease. Columnaris disease affects aquaculture species, particularly the catfish species, as well as many aquarium species, but trout aquaculture in Finland has also been hit. Now American scientist has found that the hardness of the water can be a determining factor for the outbreak of columnaris.

Read about the findings here

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