Sunday, 9 February 2014

60,000 to 80,000 Farmed Salmon have Escaped in Bantry Bay, Co Cork, Ireland

It is estimated that between 60,000 to 80,000 one year old  farmed salmon have escaped from a salmon farm at Gerahies, Bantry Bay, County Cork with an added undetermined number of smaller fish escaping after a bad storm on Saturday 1st February 2014. Save Bantry Bay said: ‘We are particularly concerned because of the very real likelihood of further escapees. The protective nets have been stripped by the gales and the seas are overtopping the cages, allowing salmon to escape and predators like seals to enter.’

‘Their licence requires that they report all escapes to the Department of Agriculture without delay and this information should be available to us all through the local media.’
The company must tell the public what is going on, even if they are unable to undertake a detailed survey of the remaining fish because of the unsettled weather. We need to know what measures the company is taking to prevent their further escapes.

The statement went on to explain that ‘The escape of farmed salmon is a potential disaster for our native wild stock. ‘These escaped fish interbreed and compete with wild salmon, transmitting disease and parasites to them. Farmed salmon compete with native stock for scarce food and irreversibly weaken the genetic makeup and survival of wild salmon if they reproduce with them.
‘Contained systems on land are the only way to protect the environment and raise salmon. It is clear now that the proposed expansion by Marine Harvest in Bantry Bay can not be defended’, the statement from the local group concluded.

http://bantryblog.wordpress.com/2014/02/09/press-release-call-for-fish-farm-escape-details/