By Dan Shapley
A virus first seen in 2005 is killing Great Lakes fish in such numbers that some scientists worry about the prognosis for freshwater species throughout the United States. The disease, called viral hemorrhagic septicemia, or VHS, has been found in three of the five Great Lakes, as well as two rivers and several smaller lakes in New York. It poses no threat to fishermen, even if they eat diseased fish. As spring warms the water, the season of the virus will return. Scientists are watching to determine whether the outbreak will continue to intensify, or diminish as the relationship between the pathogen and its hosts matures.