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BAA 2011-16 Goldfish amended requirements

This Biosecurity Australia Advice notifies stakeholders of amended health certification requirements for the importation of goldfish (Carassius auratus) for ornamental purposes. Recent research findings have confirmed that Australia’s aquatic animal health status with regard to goldfish haematopoietic necrosis virus (GFHNV) has changed and is now present in Australia. The requirement that exporting countries declare that goldfish intended for Australia are free from the disease is to be removed from relevant importation conditions.

Recent research findings have indicated that goldfish haematopoietic necrosis virus (GFHNV) is present in domestic goldfish populations in Australia. It will no longer be necessary for goldfish exported to Australia to be certified free of the disease.

Import conditions for ornamental finfish, including exporting country health certification attesting to GFHNV freedom in goldfish consignments, were established following completion of the 1999 Import Risk Analysis on Live Ornamental Finfish, which found that GFHNV was exotic to Australia. Health certification attesting to freedom from the disease was therefore warranted. Since 1999, reports of domestic goldfish exhibiting clinical and histopathological signs indicative of GFHNV infection have been published. However, these findings were not associated with epizootics. The recent development of a molecular (polymerase chain reaction) method for GFHNV identification has enabled subsequent testing of domestic goldfish populations in farms and at wholesale and retail outlets in Australia. This work has established that GFHNV is now present in Australia. Following consideration of these findings, Animal Biosecurity Branch has reviewed importation conditions for goldfish and concluded that health certification requirements in relation to GFHNV should be discontinued.

The revised health certification requirements for goldfish are provided at Attachment 1. A revised model health certificate is provided at Attachment 2.

Please pass this notice to other interested parties. If those parties wish to be included in future communications on this matter they should contact Animal Biosecurity Branch at animal@daff.gov.au .

A/g General Manager
Animal Biosecurity Branch