WSSV is a large DNA virus of the Nimaviridae family, and is the causative agent for White Spot Disease (WSD). It can be found in all aquatic crustaceans, but is best known for causing disease with significant morbidity and mortality in aquaculture Penaeid shrimps.
Common symptoms of WSSV include a sudden reduction of feeding, lethargy, and white plagues on the carapace, appendages and inside surface of cuticle. The dysfunctions of gills and hepatopancreas due to severe damage also leads to death in the last stage of the infection. This highly contagious virus will result in mass mortalities of shrimp, causing substantial production and economic losses to the shrimp farmers.
Disease outbreaks may be induced by the weather conditions. Water temperatures has a profound effect on disease expression, with average of below 30°C being conducive to WSD outbreaks. During rainy cold season, rains may lower pond water temperature by 3 to 5°C, creating a favourable environment for WSSV to have outbreaks.
WSSV can cause a total mortality of shrimps within just one week if precautions are not taken. Therefore, farmers are encouraged to have a PCR for early detection of the virus practices to prevent any irreversible consequences in your precious shrimp pond.
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