TEXAS, USA — Texas Parks and Wildlife officials are asking anglers to report any bass they catch if they have ink-like spots on them.
Researchers are collecting data on hyperpigmentation/melanosis, also known as Blotchy Bass Syndrome, in freshwater bass species associated with a virus, officials said in a Facebook post.
The virus has never been identified in humans or common domestic pets, TPWD officials said.
"As long as the fish are in good condition, they're safe to handle and eat if cooked properly," the post said.
A report from 2021 by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said although the spots have been recognized for many years, the cause of the lesions are unknown. However, gene sequencing found the new viral family Adomaviridae, which has been associated with disease in other fish species.
If you catch a bass with ink-like spots, you are asked to please take a photo and report location to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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