Or­der to kill af­ter farmed salmon es­cape

The Press and Journal (Moray) - - MORAY NEWS -

River work­ers have ex­pressed con­cern for the pu­rity of wild salmon in Ar­gyll af­ter more than 11,000 farmed fish es­caped.

The es­cape from a Scot­tish Salmon Com­pany farm at Geas­gill on Mull was re­ported to Marine Scot­land af­ter em­ploy­ees recorded low num­bers dur­ing a rou­tine grad­ing ex­er­cise.

The Scot­tish Game­keep­ers As­so­ci­a­tion (SGA) Fish­ing Group said 11,040 farmed salmon en­tered rivers in­clud­ing the River Ba, one of the few rivers in the west of Scot­land given a class 1 rat­ing for salmon con­ser­va­tion.

Ghillies in the area have or­dered any farmed salmon caught to be killed and not re­turned to the river.

Game­keep­ers also say there is “real con­cern” cross-breed­ing between farmed salmon and wild salmon will weaken the wild gene pool.

Greg Marsh, of the SGA Fish­ing Group, who looks af­ter op­er­a­tions at River Co­ladoir and Loch Scridain said: “The Ba is a class one river, which means it is rated by Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment sci­en­tists as hav­ing the high­est grad­ing for con­ser­va­tion of wild salmon. Those on the en­vi­ron­men­tal side in Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment need to raise greater aware­ness of the dan­gers to wild fish caused by es­capes from fish farms and start do­ing some­thing more ef­fec­tive about it.”

Mr Marsh says all Scot­tish anglers need to be able to iden­tify farmed salmon in rivers to en­sure the fish are not be­ing re-re­leased.

One of the key dif­fer­ences is that vents on a wild salmon will be reddy/ brown and slightly swollen at this time of year.

Farmed salmon have sil­ver vents and their tail and pec­toral fins look smaller and are of­ten shred­ded.

Farmed salmon pose a risk to wild stocks if re­leased

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.