The Animal Kingdom a Reservoir of Disease- Part 6

Greetings! In today’s class we shall look at some disease of fishes. “ Satan, the author of disease and misery, will approach God’s people where he can have the greatest success. He has controlled the appetite in a great measure from the time of his successful experiment with Eve, in leading her to eat the forbidden fruit. He came with his temptations first to the mixed multitude, the believing Egyptians, and stirred them up to seditious murmurings. They would not be content with the healthful food which God had provided for them. Their depraved appetites craved a greater variety, especially flesh meats.” 4SP 15

Diseases of Fishes

“We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt” Numbers 11:5

The fishes have not escaped the same increase of diseases as manifested in other forms of animal life. A few citations are given as examples of the trend of conditions among them.

Microscopic Organisms

Many diseases of fishes are caused by small, usually microscopic organisms which are dependent upon the fish for their existence. Some of these microscopic organisms find congenial surroundings only in the body muscles or the internal organs of the fish. These organisms, known as endoparasites, are of little concern from the standpoint of treatment for there are no methods known at the present time for effectively combatting them, and all hope for the survival of the infected fish lies in a spontaneous natural recovery.”

A number of disease in fish are given for which treatments are suggested, namely: Several types of protozoan infections; ichthyophirius infections; gyrodactylus infections; copepod infections; bacterial infections; general infections; white fungus. In the same connection this statement is made: “Unquestionably, there are ailments of fish which are unknown as yet. Still more diseases are known but no satisfactory method of treatment has been evolved. However, in the case of the commoner diseases, the cause and a reasonably satisfactory cure are known. Although the commoner diseases are well known, very few of them present specific lesions visible to the unaided eye.”


“Probably no disease of trout is more dreaded by fish-culturists than furunculosis, and with good reason. When once established it is very difficult to eradicate and almost invariably results in an exceedingly high mortality. The disease affects chiefly the various species of salmonoid fishes, but may also affect a large number of fresh-water and marine species…”

“There is evidence that apparently healthy fish may act as carriers which greatly increases the difficulty of preventing the spread of the disease. In some instances furunculosis has run its course and apparently died out only to break out afresh at a later time. In such cases the bacteria are apparently carried over in healthy fish or in mud and debris in the ponds.”

Fish Parasites

“The association of meat-eating men and animals, as has long been known, results in the multiplication of the diseases of both. Man acquires the diseases of animals by eating their flesh and, through the pollution of streams by sewers, the infection is spread. This is especially true of the parasites of fish. A few years ago, a colony of Finns settled in the Lake Superior region. They brought with them from their European home dried fish, one of their food staples. Unfortunately, the fish was infected with the embryos of the tapeworm, a new variety not previously known in the this country. The infection has spread throughout the Great Lakes until it has become very general. Many other parasites affect the fish of our inland seas.

The New York Times, in calling attention to this great menace to life and health, says: “Many of the fish studied were so heavily infected internally that they gave the intestinal contents the appearance of being made up of about fifty per cent black pepper, while many others were seen in which it was difficult to see how it was possible for the heart and kidneys to function when so much of the host tissue had been replaced by parasite cysts.

“The study also revealed that most of the birds that eat fish are carriers of one or more parasites that enter fish during part of their life cycle.”

Fish Tapeworms: Man is subject to infection by the broad fish tapeworms of freshwater fish.

Fresh-water Fish: Man may be infected with parasites by eating fresh-water fish infected with the Chinese liver fluke (Clonorchis sinensis) and other similar parasites…

Cancer in Fish

A few years ago official government reports on conditions in fish hatcheries recorded outbreaks among trout and Salmonoids of thyroid tumors which ran through the hatcheries like an epidemic. “In one case sixteen per cent of visible tumors in April increased to ninety-two per cent by the following August, with an accompanying heavy mortality.”


The tumors were described as “typically those of goiter and cancer:…At the beginning it is a fish goiter, or is analogous to goiter in man. At the end it is fish cancer or is analogous to thyroid cancer in man. In both man and fish thyroid cancer begins with a goiters enlargement….”

With that back drop let us think

A Thought To Jot:  “Many diseases of fish are caused by small, usually microscopic organisms..” In like manner, many of our spiritual maladies are caused by the little things.

A Quote To Note:There are few who realize the influence of the little things of life upon the development of character. Nothing with which we have to do is really small. The varied circumstances that we meet day by day are designed to test our faithfulness and to qualify us for greater trusts. By adherence to principle in the transactions of ordinary life, the mind becomes accustomed to hold the claims of duty above those of pleasure and inclination. Minds thus disciplined are not wavering between right and wrong, like the reed trembling in the wind; they are loyal to duty because they have trained themselves to habits of fidelity and truth. By faithfulness in that which is least they acquire strength to be faithful in greater matters.” CC 78

Do you know? Many are wondering why fish eating is not permissible now, if Jesus ate it when He was here on earth. Do you know the answer? Find out the significance of the matter in the following DVD series, The Great Clock of Time. The point is discussed in disc 5, Do You Want Your Eyes Open?.

AbundantGrab a friend and share the wealth, from what you’ve learned in the School of Health! In next week’s class we shall learn more about diseases of animals and man. Until then, God bless!

Tell us what you learned in the comment section below!

Previous Lesson: Part 1, Part 2,Part 3, Part 4,Part 5