[Fwd: Another great contribution of aquaculture practices!!]

Ron Hill Ron.Hill at noaa.gov
Mon Aug 28 17:39:49 EDT 2000

This message from the fish-sci list is worth passing on to the
coral-list.  I was trying to compose a response to the  question about
the culture of exotic corals near the Red Sea and the danger of
releasing non-native corals in the surrounding area when this came
across my computer screen.  It is exactly the point I wanted to
make...about the adaptability of species and the fallibility of our
safeguards.  The Atlantic Salmon farmed on the west coast are supposed
to be contained throughout their lives and never released - they have
escaped.  They were not supposed to venture into fresh water -- they
have.  They were not supposed to be able to breed even if they did
escape - there is every indication that there are now breeding
populations and the impacts on native salmon and trout are yet to be

This same scenario (mistake) has been repeated over and over.  When are
we going to learn that the only environmentally friendly aquaculture
means native species only when there is even the most remote possibility
of escape?


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Another great contribution of aquaculture practices!!
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2000 13:45:08 -0700
From: Paulo Petry <fishnwine at psnw.com>
Reply-To: Scientific forum on fish and fisheries

>From http://www.adn.com/metro/story/0,2633,189630,00.html

Also see

for a good article dealing with a researcher's documentation of the
occurrence of Atlantics in BC.


The Associated Press

(Published August 27, 2000)
Ketchikan -- Commercial fishermen in Southeast Alaska have caught more
20 Atlantic salmon, raising concerns that the farmed salmon will spread
disease to wild species.

All the Atlantic salmon were caught south of Ketchikan, some in the Tree

Point area, said Phil Doherty, an Alaska Department of Fish and Game
biologist for commercial fishing.

"This is a real problem," Doherty said, pointing to the six, 10- to
Atlantic salmon spread out in the conference room Friday at Ketchikan's
and Game office.

Not only are the Atlantic salmon a threat to Pacific salmon because of
competition for food in the open ocean, but they also carry a threat of

"The big problems are the diseases that these imported fish bring; from
viruses to external parasites," he said.

Two weeks ago, more than 35,000 farmed Atlantic salmon escaped from a
pen in
Johnstone Strait, off the northern tip of Vancouver Island.

"Whether they are a part of the 35,000 that spilled out of that farm a
days ago, I don't know," Doherty said. "It seems like a lot of water to
cover in such a short time, but they are showing up in Southeast

It was once believed that Atlantic salmon would not venture into
but several pen-reared salmon have been found in freshwater streams. In
1998, an Atlantic salmon was recovered north of Ketchikan at Ward Creek.
Atlantic salmon was sexually mature and had a mate that eluded capture.

"If there's one here and there are thousands of freshwater streams in
Southeast Alaska, it's very likely there are more in some of those
Doherty said.

Unlike traditional hatcheries where the fish are released to grow in the

seas, farmed Atlantic salmon are supposed to spend their entire life in

Atlantic salmon, which resemble steelhead trout, stay alive after
unlike Pacific salmon, Doherty said.

Expansion of British Columbia's fish farm industry has been halted since

1995 when a moratorium was established. Doherty said Fish and Game hopes

that the moratorium is not lifted.

"We don't want to see fish farms as close as Prince Rupert [British
Columbia]," he said.

Jay DeLong
Olympia, WA

Best Fishes,


fishnwine at psnw.com

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