BA 2012-01 Import risk analysis for freshwater ornamental finfish with respect to gourami iridovirus and related viruses

12 January 2012

This Biosecurity Advice notifies stakeholders of the status of the import risk analysis (IRA) for freshwater ornamental finfish with respect to the quarantine risks associated with gourami iridovirus and related viruses. The Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine has considered the IRA report and will await the completion of a University of Sydney survey of Australian fish for megalocytivirus before making a determination on the IRA’s recommendations. The survey will provide additional information about the disease status of Australian fish with respect to megalocytivirus.

The provisional final IRA report was issued on 22 July 2010 for a 30-day appeal period. In October 2010 the Import Risk Analysis Appeals Panel advised the three appellants and the Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine that it had disallowed six claims and found the other to be outside the ground for appeal.

Following completion of the appeal process, the Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine has considered the final IRA report. The Director notes that the estimation of risk in the IRA report is based on the assumption that farmed and wild Australian fish are free of megalocytivirus, and that this assumption is based on limited data. He is also aware of a Fisheries Research and Development Corporation funded survey of Australian fish for megalocytivirus currently being undertaken by the University of Sydney. The survey is due for completion in March 2013. Given that this survey will provide additional relevant information, the Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine has decided to await the survey’s outcomes before making a policy determination.

The current import conditions for freshwater ornamental fish with respect to iridovirus will remain in place until further notice.

Andrew Cupit
A/g Assistant Secretary
Animal Biosecurity

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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