On 1 February 2022, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans (the Committee) agreed to undertake a study to “examine how the Department of Fisheries and Oceans prioritizes, resources and develops scientific studies and advice for the department, how the results of scientific study are communicated to the Minister and Canadians, and how the minister applies data and advice provided by the department and other government departments to ministerial decisions.”The Committee heard from 57 witnesses over nine meetings held between 26 April 2022 and 7 October 2022.Continue reading Report of the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans
According to the Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) press release of February 18, 2022, “There are multiple stressors on wild salmon, including: climate change; habitat degradation and destruction; regulated fishing as well as illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing. Given the state of Wild Pacific Salmon, the Government of Canada is taking a highly precautionary approach to manage Atlantic salmon aquaculture in the Discovery Islands area.”
Licenses for the 15 remaining fish farms in this region will not be reissued.Continue reading DFO Decision: Discovery Island Fish Farms remain closed
Editor’s note: The following article is joint letter to the Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard
Academic scientists’ critique of DFO Science Response Report 2022/045
We are a group of 16 professors and research scientists who, collectively, have extensive research expertise in fisheries, epidemiology, and the environmental consequences of aquaculture. We write to express our professional dismay at serious scientific failings in a recently published DFO Science Response Report (#2022/045) about sea lice on salmon farms and wild salmon in BC. We are deeply concerned with the report’s flaws and its main, unsupported conclusion: that the presence of parasitic sea lice on wild juvenile salmon is not significantly associated with sea lice from nearby salmon farms.Continue reading 16 scientists condemn ‘scientific failings’ of ‘flawed’ DFO report
Editor’s note: In Dr Mordecai’s most recent study, the PRV-1a virus was reported beside fish farms in the Okisollo Channel and Raza Island. Wild salmon infected with that virus would have swam by neighbouring Cortes, Read and Quadra Islands on their way home to spawn.
Dr Gideon Mordecai is a Research Associate with the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries at UBC. He is also the author of more than 20 scientific publications, the most recent of which reported the PRV1a virus was in 70% of the samples they studied from 56 fish farms.
Cortes Currents asked Dr. Mordecai,”Fish farms are claiming that BC’s PRV1 isn’t deadly for wild salmon. Is that true?”Continue reading PRV1a in fish farms, an interview with Dr Gideon Mordecai
A new study published by the Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, states that 70% of the samples taken from 56 fish farms had PRV-1.
One of the co-authors is independent biologist Alexandra Morton, who explained, “The study was my concept and I funded a lot of the analysis and did a lot of the sampling myself. It was truly collaborative with Clayoquot Action sampling the Farms in Clayoquot Sound. An extraordinary man, Dr. Neil Fraser from Powell River got in his speed boat and went to the central coast. The Wild Fish Conservancy down in Washington State, sampled farms there. So it was a sustained effort by a lot of people, and then Dr. Gideon Mordecai did the analysis of the relationship between the different strains that we picked up.”Continue reading 70% of the fish farms sampled had PRV-1, study finds