Results 1 to 2 of 2
  1. #1
    Fish&Fly
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    1,454
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    Genetic project beginning to reveal some inner secrets about salmon

    The FASMOP project (Focusing Atlantic Salmon Management on Populations) project which focuses on Atlantic salmon genetic sampling and analysis is already producing some important discoveries and enabling River Trust managers to make effective decisions about salmon management and hatcheries in particular.

    Hatcheries are seen by many to be the saviour of salmon but to others they are downright damaging. This genetic study is already beginning to highlight the complexity and diversity of salmon population genetics even within single river systems – where long suspected ‘tribes’ of fish are being proved to be a reality.

    Artificial stocking of course has the danger of short cutting evolutionary ‘fitness’ and interfering with this genetic integrity (especially if handled indiscriminately – as has happened in the past). Even worse, escaped adult salmon from fish farms may be even more damaging because their genetic make-up is so far removed from the local rivers they gate-crash.

    The FASMOP project has already identified an issue of ‘Norwegian’ fish-farmed invaders in the river Garry (Ness trib.) which was once famous for its big spring salmon. Perhaps the genetic strain of great fish of the past are now extinct?

    See the Ness & Beauly Fisheries Trust News

    The mighty Vosso in Norway has certainly suffered a similar fate. Armed with such important genetic data I can see some legal cases coming on the west coast!

    Back to hatcheries, already the data has not only highlighted the genetic dangers but also questioned the economic viability. Between 2007 and 2010, 804 River Spey rod caught salmon were sampled and only two were of hatchery origin. It is hard to know if this is a good result or not, as perhaps we should be genetically grateful that the hatchery is of such minor importance!

    So far 12,000 salmon have been genetically sampled from over 240 sites and over the next few months many more results will be published. This is the most important study ever done on salmon and will have far reaching consequences. Congratulations (and thanks) to all involved*.

    Read more about the FASMOP Genetics Project



    * Funding
    The Scottish Government has awarded a 3-year grant to RAFTS to support the preparation and implementation of fishery management plans across Scotland. This programme of sampling and analysis is supported by a proportion of this grant due to the pan Scotland interest in this work by RAFTS members.
    A number of individual Fisheries Trusts and DSFBs have contributed additional sums to the programme to support analysis of samples. Further funding will be sought and is anticipated to be confirmed over the course of the project. Additional funding may allow the extension of the project beyond the current April 2011 end point. Year 1 support was also provided by a grant award from the Atlantic Salmon Trust.

    FRS are supporting the project by providing access to line and technical management resources, conducting and completing the genetic screening and analysis within the FRS Freshwater Laboratory in Pitlochry and the provision of office and laboratory facilities and equipment support.

  2. #2
    Fish&Fly
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    1,454
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews
    See also this excellent presentation by Eric Verspoor (Marine Scotland) and Mark Coulson (RAFTS) at the 2011 RAFTS Annual Conference

    Also Mark Coulson & Roger Knight, RAFTS and Spey Foundation/DSFB taking a long hard look at the future of the Spey hatchery!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •