Earlier this year, Cornell University researchers reported finding VHS in Lake Superior fish collected in summer 2009 [See WIMS 2/3/10], but no fish kills were evident in that lake in 2009 or 2010 because of VHS, and none of Wisconsin's 2010 testing suggested the virus had spread from that massive lake to inland lakes or streams. Staggs said, "The good news is we assumed VHS was in Lake Superior when we developed the prevention rules in 2007, and as result, inland lakes and rivers were protected."
VHS can infect several dozen fish species in Wisconsin and can cause them to bleed to death; a recent Michigan State University study shows that muskellunge are most susceptible, followed by largemouth bass, yellow perch, rainbow trout, brook trout, brown trout, Chinook salmon, and Coho salmon. The virus was first detected in Wisconsin in May 2007, when dead fish collected from the Lake Winnebago and Lake Michigan systems were tested and were positive for the virus. Lake Michigan fish again tested positive for the virus in 2008 and 2009.
Access a release from WDNR with links to more information (click here).