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A Message from the Leader of the Fish Health Program

Welcome to the Western Fisheries Research Center, Fish Health Program.

The Western Fisheries Research Center (WFRC), Fish Health Program seeks to develop predictive tools and models that hindcast and forecast disease outbreaks in aquatic animal populations; expand our understanding of threats posed by a range of viral, bacterial, protozoan and fungal pathogens through biosurveillance and empirical study; improve understanding of how environmental stressors affect the fish immune response to pathogens and the resulting disease process; enhance efforts to improve our understanding of the factors affecting the emergence of new diseases of aquatic animals; adapt models to facilitate the management and control of diseases in aquatic ecosystems; and develop new tools and technologies to diagnose or control aquatic pathogens. While our strategic focus is on impacts to free-ranging marine and freshwater aquatic animal populations, we recognize that the same pathogens occur in cultured aquatic animal populations. Thus, we work with all sectors to achieve our research goals.

Please enjoy your exploration of our website. I am pleased to provide you an opportunity to learn more about us, our scientific interests and, most importantly, the range and magnitude of threats affecting fishery resources in the West. I hope this site provides you with the information you seek, or stimulates your interest in the conservation of species and environments we work with.

Dr. Paul Hershberger, Leader, WFRC Fish Health Program