Blumar recaptures 8,500 of escaped salmon

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Under Chilean law, salmon farmer has set number days to recover the salmon. Within that period, it must recapture at least 10 percent or “environmental damage is assumed”.

On Monday, SalmonBusiness reported that a storm hit the cages belonging to the major Chilean salmon farmer Blumar containing up to 875,144 salmon average weight of 3.8kg.

Authorities then assessed that a large number of fish had escaped from the site based in the Hualaihué commune, Los Lagos, southern Chile.

After a fish recapture plan which involved local fisherman, to date, they have recovered about 8,500, in accordance with the duty by law to capture 10 per cent of all escaped fish in under 30 days so that environmental damage is not caused, reports Sernapesca.

Blumar has not however been possible to fully assess the true escape numbers from the 16 of 18 cages that are under water because of rough sea conditions. 

At the time the salmon farm collapsed, fish at the site were undergoing treatment for piscirickettsiosis disease with the antimicrobial Florfenicol so the fish are not suitable for human consumption and will need to be sent to a disposal facility.

In 2018 Mowi (then Marine Harvest ) had a 680,000 salmon escape in Chile, but only caught 5.5 per cent of the fish in the 30 day window. Losses associated with the escape at the time amounted to EUR 3 million.