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Aquatic Animal Diseases Significant to Australia: Identification Field Guide 4th Edition

​​​​​Foreword

Portrait photo of Dr Mark Schipp, Australian Chief Veterinary Officer
Dr Mark Schipp,
Australian Chief Veterinary Officer

The Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry is pleased to introduce the fourth edition of this field guide. The field guide aims to help people recognise diseases significant to aquaculture and fisheries in Australia. This edition incorporates new and updated information gathered from an extensive review of the third edition. It now covers 48 aquatic animal diseases of significance to Australia that affect species of finfish, crustaceans, molluscs and amphibians.

Early recognition and reporting of suspected disease outbreaks is critical to protecting our unique aquatic biodiversity, and fisheries and aquaculture sectors. It can permit a rapid disease response to contain outbreaks, increasing the opportunity for disease eradication and thereby limiting potential impacts on aquatic animal industries and the environment. People who work closely with aquatic animals are usually the first to notice signs of a significant disease event. This field guide provides guidance for these people—commercial fishers, aquaculture workers, recreational fishers, quarantine staff, scientists, conservationists and students—to recognise significant aquatic animal diseases, should they occur.

Many people and institutions have contributed to the field guide, including fish health experts from industry, research organisations, state and territory governments, and government agencies of the Asia–Pacific region (including New Zealand), Canada, Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Drawing extensively on experience and research activities in aquatic animal health management, both in Australia and abroad, the guide complements the growing body of practical knowledge published for aquaculture and fisheries in Australia. On behalf of the Australian Government, I thank all contributors to this production for their efforts and commend this field guide to you.

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User Guide

The user guide (available below) provides information about the production of this field guide, how to use this field guide and offers principles applicable to the investigation of a suspected disease. Local advice may be obtained by contacting the listed state and territory authorities and using the references and weblinks provided. If you see any unusual signs in aquatic animals play it safe and report it immediately. Don't worry about how insignificant it may be—small signs may be an early indication of a serious disease problem. The Emergency Animal Disease Watch Hotline number is 1800 675 888.

Sections within the user guide include:

  • Copyright
  • Foreword
  • Acknowledgements
  • How to use this field guide
  • Introduction
    • Nature of disease
    • Laboratory tests and sampling
    • Reporting disease
  • Scientific names
    • Finfish
    • Molluscs
    • Crustaceans
    • Amphibians
    • Other species
  • Who to contact if you suspect a disease
  • Further reading and weblinks

Anatomy

The links below provide basic anatomical terms and descriptions applicable to aquatic animals covered in this field guide including finfish, molluscs, crustaceans and amphibians.

Dise​ases of Finfish

The links below provide information about finfish diseases considered significant to Australia. Each disease factsheet covers:

  • Signs of disease
  • Disease agent
  • Host range
  • Presence in Australia
  • Epidemiology
  • Differential diagnosis and similar diseases
  • Sample collection
  • Emergency disease hotline
  • Further reading

The diseases covered are those onAustralia's National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals.

Viral diseases of finfish

Bacterial diseases of finfish

Parasitic diseases of finfish

Other diseases of finfish

Diseases of Molluscs

The links below provide information about mollusc diseases considered significant to Australia. Each disease factsheet covers:

  • Signs of disease
  • Disease agent
  • Host range
  • Presence in Australia
  • Epidemiology
  • Differential diagnosis and similar diseases
  • Sample collection
  • Emergency disease hotline
  • Further reading

The diseases covered are those onAustralia's National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals.

Viral diseases of molluscs

Bacterial diseases of molluscs

Parasitic diseases of molluscs

Other diseases of molluscs

Diseases of Crustaceans

The links below provide information about crustacean diseases considered significant to Australia. Each disease factsheet covers:

  • Signs of disease
  • Disease agent
  • Host range
  • Presence in Australia
  • Epidemiology
  • Differential diagnosis and similar diseases
  • Sample collection
  • Emergency disease hotline
  • Further reading

The diseases covered are those onAustralia's National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals.

Viral diseases of crustaceans

Bacterial diseases of crustaceans

Other diseases of crustaceans

Diseases of Amphibians

The links below provide information about amphibian diseases considered significant to Australia. Each disease factsheet covers:

  • Signs of disease
  • Disease agent
  • Host range
  • Presence in Australia
  • Epidemiology
  • Differential diagnosis and similar diseases
  • Sample collection
  • Emergency disease hotline
  • Further reading

The diseases covered are those on Australia's National List of Reportable Diseases of Aquatic Animals.

Viral diseases of amphibians

Fungal diseases of amphibians

Aquatic Animal Health

  • Information about the Aquatic Animal Health Program can be accessed from the Aquatic Animal Health home page.
Last reviewed:
25 Feb 2015