400 escaped salmon recaptured from Cooke Aquaculture salmon farm

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Which apparently is a “pretty good,” according to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

Of the 2,000 to 3,000 salmon that escaped from the farm in Newfoundland’s Hermitage Bay, around 400 have been recaptured according to CBS news.

Between 2,000 and 3,000 salmon escaped over the course of four days, from July 27 to 30, from the Cooke Aquaculture salmon site as net extensions were sewn onto a pen at the site

Talking to the publication, Chris Hendry, regional aquaculture coordinator with DFO, said that rate of recapture to date was actually pretty good.

“Our reports so far suggest that about 400 salmon have been recaptured, so for a two- to three-thousand escape, that’s about a 15-20 per cent recapture rate,” he told CBC’s The Broadcast.

“When we had the last large escape incident back in 2013 and there were capture methods deployed, about 10 per cent of those fish were recaptured. So this seems to be a better percentage of success.”

Hendry added there will be an investigation into what happened at the Hermitage Bay site, and further discussions once the capture of salmon is completed. Canadian officials ordered the salmon farmers to remove gillnets it was using to recapture escaped salmon after a humpback whale became trapped in them.

“One of the questions is, in a case of a release of salmon, is there any type of repercussions, and that’s something we would discuss with the province as we both co-deliver the code of containment,” he said.

“It also requires us to do an analysis of any type escape incident and recommendations on improvements or identifying any deficiencies.”

The captured salmon, meanwhile, will need to be destroyed by the company, Hendry said.

“As a condition of the licence, they’re required to dispose of them … but we are requiring them to take samples so we can build on an existing database of genetic and scale samples for identification of farm salmon.”