The state raises its guard even higher in the battle against the deadly fish virus, VHS.

There haven't been any new VHS discoveries lately but the Department of Agriculture is taking steps to keep it that way. All fish stocked into state waterways must now be tested for VHS first.

State Fish Veterinarian, Dr. Myron Kebus says that will impact all private fish farms as well as the DNR hatcheries.

Dr. Kebus also says certain kinds of bait caught in the state will now face testing not just live bait shipped in from out of state.

Dr. Kebus admits the new requirements will drive up costs for fish farmers who already bear the brunt of testing expenses. He says some farmers are paying seven hundred dollars a species for VHS testing. Some total bills are running as high as twenty-thousand dollars.

But Dr. Kebus says it can't be helped. Fish have to be tested in order to stop the spread of VHS. 

AUDIO: Jim Dick reports ( 1:03 MP3 )

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