Certified VHSV-free water bodies

The DNR has implemented VHSV surveillance zones to help regulate the movement of fish within Minnesota based on an annual surveillance program.

Fish originating from Minnesota waterbodies located outside of the Lake Superior basin will be considered VHSV-free, subject to annual VHSV surveys conducted by the DNR.

For fish originating within the Lake Superior basin (i.e., the St. Louis River, Nemadji River, Cloquet River, Lake Superior South, and Lake Superior North watersheds) or outside of Minnesota, VHSV-testing is required for each individual lot of fish to be transported.

If you export fish from Minnesota, check the testing requirements of the state to which you are exporting.

VHSV surveillance zones

The map below shows the viral hemorrhagic septicemia virus surveillance zones in Minnesota and their status. Click a zone name on the map or select a list in the drop-down to display additional information and download the listing of waterbodies in that zone.

VHSV surveillance zones in MinnesotaDes Moines River zone: 300 VHSV-free waterbodiesLake Superior zone: VHSV-riskMinnesota River zone: VHSV-freeMississippi Headwaters zone: VHSV-freeMississippi River South East zone: VHSV-freeMissouri River zone: VHSV-freeRainy River zone: VHSV-freeRed River zone: VHSV-freeSt. Croix River zone: VHSV-free
VHSV free zones

Fish originating from Minnesota waterbodies located outside of the Lake Superior drainage basin will be considered VHSV free subject to annual VHSV surveys. For all zones listed below, the certification date is July 1, 2021, and the expiration date is July 1, 2022.

VHSV risk zones

The only risk zone currently in Minnesota is the Lake Superior drainage basin (i.e., the St. Louis River, Nemadji River, Cloquet River, Lake Superior South, and Lake Superior North watersheds), which has 1,458 waterbodies.

VHSV information

Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia virus (VHSV) is capable of causing disease in Minnesota’s wild and cultured fish stocks. Many species of marine and freshwater fishes are susceptible to infection with VHSV and able to transmit the virus or contract severe disease.

So far, VHSV never has been detected in Minnesota waters but its presence in fish populations in Lake Superior is a continued threat to Minnesota’s fisheries. To prevent the introduction of VHSV into Minnesota waters, the DNR implemented regulations for harvesting and transporting species that are susceptible to VHSV.

Species that experience severe disease once infected can carry and transmit the virus to others can be found on the VHSV-susceptible species list.