World's leading crayfish plague researchers gather in Tampere


<p>The Finnish Food Safety Authority Evira is organising an open seminar on crayfish plague, the most serious crayfish disease so far identified. This seminar will be held in Tampere on 31 August – 1 September 2013. Crayfish and crayfish disease specialists from all over the world will participate. The seminar is part of an annual meeting of laboratories responsible for studying crustacean diseases within the European Union. <br /></p>

Various aspects of crayfish plague will be extensively discussed at the seminar. Presentations will be given by reputed crayfish plague researchers, as well as crayfish plague experts responsible for the diagnostics of crayfish plague at the World Organisation for Animal Health OIE.

Only a few suspected cases of crayfish plague in the summer of 2013
This summer, only a few noble crayfish samples have been sent to Evira’s Kuopio office, one of the OIE reference laboratories for crayfish plague, due to suspected cases of the plague. So far, only one case has been confirmed to be crayfish plague: a signal crayfish-type plague encountered in June in Oulujärvi. It is also suspected that noble crayfish populations have vanished due to the plague. In these cases, dead crayfish may have been detected, but not collected as samples.

Outside the crayfishing season, any crayfish found dead or in poor condition should be sent to Evira for analysis. Current methods allow us to confirm crayfish plague as the cause of the problems under investigation, even in the case of dead crayfish provided that they have not become too spoilt. To prevent the spoiling process, dead crayfish can be frozen after their discovery.

Crayfish plague common in signal crayfish
Nearly all signal crayfish carry the crayfish plague. The disease can be present for years without any symptoms appearing, even in waters populated by noble crayfish. In order to protect crayfish waters from new infections, please bear in mind that crayfish plague spores can be spread on wet equipment when moving from one water body to another. However, the greatest risk is posed by signal crayfish carrying the infection, in which case noble crayfish cannot survive in the same waters.

Welcome to the seminar!
The seminar is open to all, but advance registration is required.
The seminar will be held in English.

View the programme and register for the seminar here

Read more on Evira’s crayfish plague reference laboratory activities
Introduction to reference laboratory activities

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