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Salmon take part in great escape

UK - Scientists have deliberately released 700 farmed salmon from a fish farm in Wester Ross as part of an international experiment to track their movements.

It follows suggestions from Norway that escaped farmed fish from Scotland may be making their way into their rivers and breeding with their valuable wild salmon stocks.

The project has been criticised by the Salmon Farming Protest Group. According to the group's chairman, Bruce Sandison, all the information sought was already available.

The study, conducted by the Aberdeen based Fisheries Research Services under the auspices of the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organisation (NASCO), hopes to determine whether any farmed salmon that appear in rivers and fisheries in Norway originate in other countries with salmon farming industries.

Previous experiments in Norway have indicated that fish released at this time of year do not enter local rivers. The healthy fish being used in this simulated escape have been tagged for easy identification.

Scottish deputy rural development minister Rhona Brankin said yesterday (Tuesday) that both wild salmon and sea trout interests had given their support to this experiment.

Source: Shetland Marine News