Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Call for Cull of Farmed Salmon in Northwest Scotland

FishNewsEU.com http://www.fishnewseu.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=14014:salmon-cull-sought&catid=45:scottish&Itemid=392

AN angling body has urged the Scottish government to enforce a cull of farmed salmon in northwest Scotland. 

The Salmon & Trout Association (Scotland) argues that Loch Duart Ltd should be forced to cull following the publication of the latest sea lice statistics reveal that lice numbers at the companies sites have been over the industry's Code of Good Practice threshold on all but two of the last 27 months, despite the company treating these farms for sea lice on 67 different occasions.

In March 2015, S&TA(S) observes that the company's farms reached 16 times the threshold designed to protect wild fish from infestation.

S&TA(S) therefore believes that the Scottish Government should consider ordering an immediate cull of all the farmed salmon in these farms, to protect wild salmon and sea trout, along the lines of that instigated by Norwegian authorities in the Vikna district of Nord Trondelag, in order to protect migrating their wild salmon and sea trout in the spring of 2014.

The S&TA(S) also wants to see the maximum biomass at Loch Duart's north-west Highland farms dramatically reduced to a level at which the company can demonstrably control sea lice, which figures currently suggest is only 600 tonnes, shared across all those farms.

Hugh Campbell Adamson, Chairman of S&TA(S), said: "Wild salmon and sea trout are a key part of what makes Scotland famous, but the latest figures for wild salmon numbers are very poor indeed. We know that wild fish need a huge conservation effort.

"What we simply cannot afford now is fish farms like those run by Loch Duart in the northwest Highlands pouring millions of mobile young lice into the paths of migrating juvenile salmon and sea trout.

"The question for Scottish Government is 'how much more evidence of failure to control lice do you need before you call time on the bad fish-farmers?'"