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Thread: Alaska salmon hatcheries under attack

  1. #1
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Aberdeen WA

    Default Alaska salmon hatcheries under attack

    Swamping the North Pacific with bazillions of hatchery salmon carries with it unintended yet predictable consequences.
    In the hubris of managing any species in isolation, it quickly becomes clear that you can't push or tug at ANYTHING in nature without figuring out it's connected to everything else.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone."
    The KeenEye MD

  2. #2
    New member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004

    Question Sour grapes?

    Thanks, Doc, interesting articles. I read both of them, and, to tell the truth, it sounds to me like the Canadian fish farms are simply upset because of the eco-certification granted Alaska's ocean-farmed salmon by the Marine Stewardship Council while the Canadian, pen-raised fish are not given such certification. Sounds like the Canadian organizations are mounting a straw-man defense by suggesting that ocean-ranched fish pose some sort of undefined, unspecified threat to wild stocks. No documentation, just wild-eyed, sky-might-fall wailing.

    As the Dispatch article reported:

    The Society is one of three Canadian conservation groups appealing to the Marine Stewardship Council to lift eco-certifications for Alaska salmon. Council's certification that fish come from sustainable and environmentally sound fisheries is thought to carry considerable market influence with environment and health conscious consumers. In the 49th state, no salmon spend their entire lives in pens, but billions are spawned in hatcheries and some of them are raised to a smolt size of 3 or 4 inches before being released into the wild. (emphasis added)
    Sounds like sour grapes to me. Sales might be down?

    From the Vancouver Sun article:

    Raincoast Conservation Foundation, SkeenaWild Conservation Trust and Watershed Watch Salmon Society said Wednesday they plan to challenge the eco-certification awarded to the Alaskan salmon fishery by the Marine Stewardship Council.

    The council assesses fisheries and certifies those that are sustainable and environmentally sound, giving consumers assurance they are buying seafood from a responsibly managed fishery.

    MSC certification labels appear on fresh, frozen and canned fish. No stranger to controversy, the council sparked outrage last year when it awarded certification to B.C. sockeye salmon, including the troubled Fraser River runs.
    MSC gave 16 Alaskan salmon fisheries blanket certification in 2000, which remains the commission's largest and most complex of the 133 fisheries it certifies. But the MSC's own surveillance report on the Alaskan fisheries noted concerns about the effects that the release of billions of hatchery fish into the ocean could be having on wild salmon stocks.(emphasis added)
    Sorry, but unspecified "concerns" don't cut it. I think the Canadian organizations are mad 'cause their fish aren't certified as "sustainable and environmentally sound" as are Alaska's salmon.


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