Fish vet keeps ponds healthy

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - COUNTRYFILE - by Mike Ben­nett

AF­TER the stress of run­ning his busy vets prac­tice Chris New­man has es­tab­lished him­self as a spe­cial­ist prac­ti­tioner deal­ing with fish. When he qual­i­fied from the Royal Vet­eri­nary Col­lege in 1981, tu­ition in fish medicine amounted to one lec­ture on trout farm­ing but since then the ne­glect of the small, but he feels im­por­tant, as­pect of medicine has been ad­dressed by the 50-year-old. In 1987 he set up his own small an­i­mal prac­tice in an old butch­ers shop in Den­ham, Buck­ing­hamshire, and con­tin­ued to ex­pand his knowl­edge of fish dis­ease and all the treat­ments avail­able. He sold up in 2005 and moved to Ball Lane, Ken­ning­ton, to take up his other pas­sion in life of wildlife pho­tog­ra­phy and fish care. Now as a fish vet his ex­per­tise sees him dash­ing out to calls across Kent to deal with cold­wa­ter an­i­mal chal­lenges. He said: “The work mainly in­volves in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the causes of fish mor­tal­ity and the treat­ment of bac­te­rial ul­cer dis­eases. “Many of th­ese are where peo­ple have been treat­ing their fish and ponds with a range of pro­pri­etary prod­ucts, com­monly with­out hav­ing made a proper di­ag­no­sis of the cause of the prob­lem, and of­ten with lit­tle suc­cess.” In­ves­ti­ga­tions nor­mally mean a visit to the owner’s home for a pond ex­am­i­na­tion as many prob­lems are re­lated to poor en­vi­ron­ment and wa­ter qual­ity. Fish are ex­am­ined, of­ten un­der light anaes­the­sia, and sam­ples taken for lab­o­ra­tory anal­y­sis. “In many cases, es­pe­cially where bac­te­rial ul­cer dis­ease is con­firmed, the treat­ment regime of choice is an­tibi­otics given by in­jec­tion. “I can usu­ally man­aged to train my clients in this tech­nique, but most end up get­ting very wet.” He can be con­tacted on 01233 610112.

Pic­ture: Barry Duffield pd1167178

Vet Chris New­man with a koi

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