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Go-ahead for Salmon Nursery

SCOTLAND - A community owned fish farm on the island of Out Skerries has been given the go-ahead for a small salmon nursery at West Voe.

Bound Skerries Seafoods has been given planning consent for the nursery despite evidence that the seabed in that stretch of water was dead, a report in Shetland Marine News/em> says.

Planners in Shetland had recommended that the application shpould be thrown out, but councillors voted in favour after hearing that the nursery would not increase tonnage farmed in the Voe.

Shetland Marine News reports company managing director John Weston saying that the nursery, comprising of six 12 by 12 metre cages, would help the Bound Skerries better manage their annual intake of fish and ensure survival.

Coastal zone manager Martin Holmes told councillors the application was against council policy as the proposed new site would be too close to the existing salmon growing site in West Voe, Shetland Marine News says.

And a seabed survey had found that the seabed in the voe was "effectively dead" with hardly any marine life left.

But Mr Weston said having a second site to grow smolts from initially 55 grams in size to 150 grams before transferring them to the more exposed main sites, would ensure a longer fallowing period for the West Voe salmon growing site.

He also said that as an organically certified fish farm Bound Skerries only stock up to 500 tonnes of fish in the West Voe cages rather than the 1,000 tonnes they had consent for, the report says.

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