Date lodged: 2 June 2017
To ask the Scottish Government whether large numbers of free swimming stage sea lice leaving fish farms harm wild Scottish salmonid (salmon and sea trout) populations, as they have reportedly been shown to do in Norway and Ireland.
Answered by: Roseanna Cunningham 14 June 2017
Currently there is no estimate of the level of impact of sea lice from aquaculture on wild salmon and sea trout population status in Scotland. Marine Scotland are currently two years into a ten-year programme of research to look further into impacts on wild salmon from sea lice in the Scottish coastal environment. Progress is detailed at: http://www.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Salmon-Trout-Coarse/Freshwater/Research/Aqint/sealice.
Marine Scotland also has a long term monitoring programme looking at marine performance of sea trout at the River Shieldaig in Wester Ross. This work can be found at: http://www.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Salmon-Trout-Coarse/Freshwater/Research/Aqint/Shieldaig