• Modelling origin and spread of Infectious Pancreatic Necrosis Virus in the Irish salmon farming industry: the role of inputs

      Ruane, N.M.; Murray, A.G.; Geoghegan, F.; Raynard, R.S. (Elsevier, 2009)
      Observed emergence of IPNV in farmed Irish salmon is simulated using a model originally developed to analyse the spread of the virus in Scotland [Murray, A.G., 2006a. A model of the spread of infectious pancreatic necrosis virus in Scottish salmon farms 1996–2003. Ecol. Model. 199, 64–72]. IPNV appears to have become established relatively recently in Ireland and the model is altered to explicitly simulate the origin of the spread of the virus. Input to freshwater farms was key to initiation of infection, but modelling suggests that endogenous spread was responsible for much of the subsequent increase in prevalence of IPNV. From the modelling, it is unlikely that direct imports accounted for most IPNV cases. If this is the case, cessation of imports, without a substantial improvement in biosecurity, would be likely to be of only limited effect in controlling IPNV. Marine IPNV prevalence appears to be insensitive to direct interventions in the marine environment (as in the Scottish model). A multi-element control strategy, targeting both endogenous spread and external input of infection and prioritising freshwater sites, but extending to marine sites, would probably now be required to eradicate IPNV from Ireland.
    • Risk factors associated with increased mortality of farmed Pacific oysters in Ireland during 2011

      Clegg, T.A.; Morrissey, T.; Geoghegan, F.; Martin, S.W.; Lyons, K.; Ashe, S.; More, S.J. (Elsevier, 2014)
      The Pacific oyster, Crassostrea gigas, plays a significant role in the aquaculture industry in Ireland. Episodes of increased mortality in C. gigas have been described in many countries, and in Ireland since 2008. The cause of mortality events in C. gigas spat and larvae is suspected to be multifactorial, with ostreid herpesvirus 1 (OsHV-1, in particular OsHV-1 μvar) considered a necessary, but not sufficient, cause. The objectives of the current study were to describe mortality events that occurred in C. gigas in Ireland during the summer of 2011 and to identify any associated environmental, husbandry and oyster endogenous factors. A prospective cohort study was conducted during 2010–2012, involving 80 study batches, located at 24 sites within 17 bays. All 17 bays had previously tested positive for OsHV-1 μvar. All study farmers were initially surveyed to gather relevant data on each study batch, which was then tracked from placement in the bay to first grading. The outcome of interest was cumulative batch-level mortality (%). Environmental data at high and low mortality sites were compared, and a risk factor analysis, using a multiple linear regression mixed effects model, was conducted. Cumulative batch mortality ranged from 2% to 100% (median = 16%, interquartile range: 10–34%). The final multivariable risk factor model indicated that batches imported from French hatcheries had significantly lower mortalities than non-French hatcheries; sites which tested negative for OsHV-1 μvar during the study had significantly lower mortalities than sites which tested positive and mortalities increased with temperature until a peak was reached. There were several differences between the seed stocks from French and non-French hatcheries, including prior OsHV-1 μvar exposure and ploidy. A range of risk factors relating to farm management were also considered, but were not found significant. The relative importance of prior OsHV-1 μvar infection and ploidy will become clearer with ongoing selection towards OsHV-1 μvar resistant oysters. Work is currently underway in Ireland to investigate these factors further, by tracking seed from various hatchery sources which were put to sea in 2012 under similar husbandry and environmental conditions.