DAO prepress abstract  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao03218

Ichthyophonus in sport-caught groundfishes from southcentral Alaska

Bradley P. Harris*, Sarah R. Webster, Nathan Wolf, Jacob L. Gregg, Paul K. Hershberger

*Email: bharris@alaskapacific.edu

ABSTRACT: This report of Ichthyophonus in common sport-caught fishes throughout the marine waters of southcentral Alaska represents the first documentation of natural Ichthyophonus infections in lingcod Ophiodon elongates and yelloweye rockfish Sebastes ruberrimus. Additionally, the known geographic range of Ichthyophonus in black rockfish Sebastes melanops has been expanded northward to include southcentral Alaska. Among all species surveyed, the infection prevalence was highest (35%, n = 334) in Pacific halibut Hippoglossus stenolepis. There were no gross indications of high-level infections or clinically diseased individuals. These results support the hypothesis that under typical conditions, Ichthyophonus can occur at high infection prevalence accompanied with low-level infection among a variety of fishes throughout the eastern North Pacific Ocean, including southcentral Alaska.