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Vancouver Sun: B.C.'s wild salmon threatened by "Alaskan ocean ranching and hatchery operations"

I took this photo at Sea-Tac in late May 2010 ...
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B.C.'s wild salmon threatened by Alaskan practices - conservation groups

By Randy Shore, Vancouver Sun January 11, 2012

........ MSC gave 16 Alaskan salmon fisheries blanket certification in 2000, which remains the commission's largest and most complex of the 133 fisheries it certifies. But the MSC's own surveillance report on the Alaskan fisheries noted concerns about the effects that the release of billions of hatchery fish into the ocean could be having on wild salmon stocks.

In all, the 2011 surveillance report noted that 19 conditions of the fishery's recertification remained unfulfilled.

"Alaskan ocean ranching and hatchery operations release billions of farm-raised fish into natural eco-systems and wild salmon populations," said Aaron Hill, a biologist with the Watershed Watch Salmon Society. "There is increasing scientific concern about the effect that flooding the North Pacific with these fish is having on wild salmon populations."

Alarm bells about the practice of ocean ranching began ringing as soon as the Alaskan fishery was certified more than 10 years ago. A 2001 report by the Environment and Natural Resources Institute at the University of Alaska Anchorage bluntly warned that the practice could jeopardize the state's own wild salmon populations.

Ocean-ranched fish are hatched and reared in fresh water and then raised in ocean-based net pens where they are fed and protected from....

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