Whirling Disease continues to Plague Banff


By: Kelly-Anne Roberts

Whirling disease was found in Johnson Lake in Banff National Park at the end of August and within three weeks’ officials announced it had spread to the upper Bow River.

Six more locations were added to the list of rivers, creeks and lakes with confirmed cases of the disease on Thursday.

The disease doesn’t harm people or mammals but it does effect most fish, including, salmon, trout, char and whitefish. Whirling disease causes fish to swim erratically or whirl, making it difficult to feed and avoid predators.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said in a note on their website, “Whirling disease may have been present for several years and the ongoing sampling will help determine the extent of the distribution and the most appropriate disease response.”

The detection of the disease in August was the first confirmed case in Canada.