Protest of Wild Steelhead at Pike Place Market

I totally agree with Tom on this one, fish farming is significantly detrimental to the environment and wild fish, and should be boycotted. Educate yourself on which fish stocks are healthy enough to support commercial harvest, and which are harvested in responsible those fisheries with your dollar, boycott the rest.



Active Member
the moratorium does NOT extend to indians. I would be protesting the selling and buying of a depleted resource; wild steelhead. I don't think the indians should be allowed to harvest them, and i dont think its any better that there are people willing to buy them and sell them.
If we can't keep these fish no one should be able to, including Native Americans. Just seeing nets strewn(sp?) across the Puyallup with dead fish sitting in empty boats on shore rotting away makes me sick.


Active Member
flyfishneahbay- yeah...good idea... go kill some "wild" chinook on june 27th....its not like they are threatened in puget sound or anything.....oh wait...THEY who's the hairbrained one....BobL was just trying to say they shouldn't be hurting our depleted resources...he doesnt deserve to be called names, and I doubt he is a socalled "PETAphile" otherwise he wouldn't fish.

Chris Bellows

Your Preferred WFF Poster
i never said we shouldn't protect the resource, or that it's wrong to protect the resource. i still think saying it's "wrong" to kill a fish is counterproductive. first, it aligns one with AR nazis... and second it's hypocritical to say it's "wrong" morally if you also support c&r fisheries (which kill fish).

the question is why we conserve nature. is it just to have and never be able to see or experience (the animal rights way) or is it to have the ability to bike, hike, ski, fish and hunt in our beautiful wildlands? i choose option number 2, because i know i and many others would never see the places and beauty we see if it weren't for the activities we do such as fishing and hunting.... not to mention that fishermen and hunters spend far more dollars in protecting and restoring habitat (for our selfish reasons) than all the animal rights wackos combined (not to mention the non-consumptive users).

hope that clears things up,

Chris Bellows

Your Preferred WFF Poster
someone not involved in the process <G>. in mixed stock fisheries involving healthy stocks and not so healthy stocks there are a percentage of fish allowed to be harvested from depressed runs (a small number) so anglers can access healthy wild runs (such as upriver brights) and hatchery fish (which aren't marked). it's kind of the same thing as allowing a c&r fishery with it's 5% mortality on depressed runs (except in that case the target is the depressed runs) such as on the skagit (it's projected below escapement).

i don't know bob except for his posts here, and we've had arguments before (and i think he can fight his own battles) but when you compare killing wild fish to wearing fur you are venturing very close to being allied with the animal rights movement. when you state that we want city folks to feel the same way about killing wild fish as wearing fur... that's dangerous imo. there's nothing wrong with fur, leather, down, veal, or other animal products.

but thanks for responding, each time i respond i get to think about the first salmon of the year grilling on my bbq.... mmmmmmmm


Active Member
Thank you for clarifying. I too am looking forward to throwing my first fish hatchery fish of the year on the bbq. You are right about the comparison of animal rights to fisheries being a dangerous one.
Well thank you for the link to Washington Trout. In my ignorance I don’t want another outfit to take credit for my own stupidity so I went to some of the links that Washington Trout has on their website. They list 8 reasons to do away with net pens.

1 The first is the plague of sea lice in net pens and the pharmaceuticals used to treat them.

Yet you can find this statement in the last link, (1)

“ In the Pacific Northwest the use of pharmaceuticals to control sea lice has not been practiced in Washington State for over 15 years because they have not presented significant problems to growers, but some sea lice control agents have been used infrequently in British Columbia.”

2 abundant antibiotic use to control diseases in farm populations

“The specific diseases and their prevalence in Atlantic salmon stocks cultured in net-pens in Puget Sound are not shown to be any different than those of the more numerous cultured stocks of Pacific salmon in hatcheries, which in turn are not known to have a high risk for infecting wild salmonids.”

3 the use of dye to enhance fish color.

Well take away my M&M’s, my Coca-Cola even my bourbon too because they are all guilty of using coloring too.

4 Higher concentration of PCBs in farm raised fish.

Within the last couple of months both the PI and the TNT had stories that indicated that the levels were just as high and in some cases higher in wild fish.

5. The impact of health of other marine populations due to uneaten fish feed and feces under the pens.

“At well-flushed sites the abundance and diversity of infaunal organisms is positively correlated with total organic carbon, suggesting that the farm stimulates the infaunal community throughout the area.”

If you have ever been crabbing you know what’s happening. The farms that cause problems are farms that don’t flush. Those of us with indoor plumbing know what that means too.

6. Unsuitable use of other wild fish populations to produce fish feed-it takes over 3 pounds of wild fish (such as sardines, anchovies, mackerel, and herring) to produce 1 pound of farmed salmon.

Now this one really pissed me off. Dim as I am where does Washington Trout think that the wild fish eat? Salad bars? Since 95% of our salmon are history one would think that there would be plenty of baitfish. Wild fish must also, not take as much food to gain a pound.

7. Escape of the non-native, aggressive Atlantic salmon, which can adapt to and colonize waters that are home to native Pacific salmon.

“In the past century, there have been numerous attempts in the United States and elsewhere to establish Atlantic salmon outside their native range. At least 170 attempts occurred in 34 different states where Atlantic salmon were not native, including Washington, Oregon, and California (MacCrimmon and Gots 1979). None of these efforts was successful. No reproduction by Atlantic salmon was verified after introductions in the waters of these states (MacCrimmon and Gots 1979, Alverson and Ruggerone 1997, Dill and Cordone 1997).” (2)

That is 34 states with at least 34 diffent groups of scientists. We have been trying since 1904 to introduce Atlantic salmon in our state and they are TOTALLY non aggressive and have never been established outside their native area.

They do not, nor have they ever spawned with existing populations. You have more to fear from hatchery raised Pacific salmon interfacing with the Gene pool than you do Atlantics. You beat up on the farmers and ignore the commercial interests. UN-FRIGGIN BELEIVABLE!

(1) The Net-pen Salmon Farming Industry in the Pacific Northwest (U.S. Dept. Commerce, NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-NWFSC-49)

(2) Review of Potential Impacts of Atlantic Salmon Culture on Puget Sound Chinook Salmon and Hood Canal Summer-Run Chum Salmon Evolutionarily Significant Units (U.S. Dept. Commerce, NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-NWFSC-53)

C Van

coming soon to a stream near you
I'm just going to wade in and say killing wild steelhead is bad, I could ramble on and confuse myself and all of you on the other issues, so Killing wild steelhead=BAD, and you would have my support.


Active Member
This is a tough one. Despite compelling "scientific research" I find it hard to believe commercial harvest can possibly be good for wild fish stocks. It seems logical that engineered fish would be bad news, yet... other than anecdotal evidence of a very few Atlantics spawning on Vancouver Island streams, where's the damage? On the other hand, there is NO DOUBT that commercial fishing destroys wild fish. This has been demonstrated over and over again. Just look at the entire North Atlantic. I have a real hard time buying what the commercial fishers are selling when it comes to politics. I don't trust them anymore than I'd trust the timber biz to tell me how to manage an old growth forest. With a limited resource, the commercial wild fishers want to take fish away from us sporties, and the fish farmers don't.

Build some fish farms 20 miles inland, and let's crush the wild fish "harvest" forever. Commercial fishing is by far the worst thing for wild salmon and steelhead-- yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
Wow, you guys sure can take off on a literal trip.
Bob's Point? I read him to say that eating wild Steelhead should be considered be taboo to people that is all:7

darrin ><>
I'm sure there are poor practices used in farming salmon, just like there are in raising all livestock. Once concerns were raised in those industries, you saw a rise in the popularity of organically raised beef and pork, and free range poultry. It seems like the same might be possible with the fish. Yet I hear none of the opponents to farmed fish state that they would support farmed fish if some of the negative issues were resolved. Perhaps they are consumed with the idea of being able to stalk, catch, and consume their own wild salmonid. I don't blame them, but at this point the question remains can you have your wild salmon and eat them too?


Active Member
I dont have much time here to write this response, but I will try to address some of the concerns you brought up. Thank you for taking the time to reply to my post.

1. While pharmaceuticals may not have been used in washington to control sea lice, the feed most certainly contains antibiotics which have been shown to increase pathogenic resistance in salmon guts, and could lead to more harmful forms that wild salmon would not have resistance to (Weber,2003). Furthermore, the sea lice themselves have the ability to cause outbreaks among migrating salmon that pass by the netpens.

2. The second issue of the antibiotic use is the absorbtion of it by the salmon. As the article noted above points out, salmon do not absorb most of the antibiotics, and they end up on the seafloor decimating natural microbial communities, and end up being absorbed by other fish and organisms.

3. The use of dyes- you are right, this one doesn't really matter.

4. PCB's- I don't know if this is the PI article you were referring to, but here is a quote, "The average levels of PCBs in wild salmon, according to the Environmental Working Group report, are about five parts per billion. In farmed salmon, they are about 27 parts per billion..." (Mclure, 2003).

5. This one gets at personal beliefs. While it is true that well-flushed sites can actually add nutrients that will help other organisms grow, this is true of all fecal/food waste. It is not however natural, and can have negative impacts. Take hood canal for example. The last several years, low DO levels have forced fishing closures, and have jeopardized bottomfish stocks. Low DO levels like this stem from over-growth of algae and phytoplankton, which are in turn eaten by zooplankton. The zooplankton die and settle on the bottom. The respiration caused by decay uses up available oxygen. Though hood canal's nutrient problem probably comes from septic/sewage waste, this waste is essentially the same as the salmon farm waste. Your argument that flushing it to dillute it is aa solution simply does not hold water because this is like saying we should release our sewage raw as long as it is mixed around enough. It is pollution no matter how you cut it, and that is why we require sewage treatment now.

6. I think your argument here simply shows a lack of understanding of the science. The second law of thermodynamics loosely states that energy is lost as it is transformed form one state to another. Wild salmon are primarily plankton feeders. Plankton is at a much lower trophic level than baitfish. Because of this thermodynamic law, there is a rough rule stating that as you go up from one trophic level to the next, you can only have 10% mass conserved, because the rest is lost as energy. This means that in terms of total mass, there are at least 10 times less baitfish than plankton in the worlds ocean because the baitfish are at a higher trophic level. Thus when wild salmon gorge themselves on three pounds of feed, they are not depleting plankton stocks, however, when farmed salmon eat three pounds of baitfish, they are hurting baitfish populations (Weber, 200).

7. Just because we tried to introduce Atlantics in the last century does not mean it was a good idea, that is why we STOPPED trying when we reallized this, some 10-30 years ago depending on where you are. While no stocked populations residualized, in the Tsitika River on Vancouver Island, juvenile atlantics were found competing for food sources with WILD STEELHEAD (isn't that the species we are trying to protect!!!!) (Weber, 2003). Furthermore just last spring juvenile atlantics of various sizes were found living in a washington creek. Now these salmon were not the progency of a wild-spawned net-pen fish, but rather juveniles that escaped from a rearing facillity that gives the salmon to the net pens (Kurwin, 2003). Also noteworthy is the fact that following the big escapes of farmed salmon in the sound, many of washington's hatcheries for pacific salmon reported atlantic salmon returning to their facilities. While they may not have colonized many streams yet, they have shown the ability to do so and given time we can only guess what kind of effect they might have.

8. Your last comment about them interbreeding is absolutely correct, but not for the reason you said. You said, "They do not, nor have they ever spawned with existing populations. You have more to fear from hatchery raised Pacific salmon interfacing with the Gene pool than you do Atlantics." Of course we have more to fear genetically from hatchery salmon- Atlantic salmon cannot spawn with pacific salmon- they are in a different genus!

9. "You beat up on the farmers and ignore the commercial interests. UN-FRIGGIN BELEIVABLE"- I beat up on the farmers because as I think I have demonstrated above, they have and will continue to harm and jeopardize our wild salmon. Commercial fishing has hurt and will continue to hurt many wild salmon runs...this is awful...and I will stand beside you and protest the Indians demonstrated for thousands of years, salmon can be harvested in limited numbers sustainably...with the harmful practices of farmed salmon,I will continue to buy wild salmon from healthy stocks, of which alaska has many.

Thanks for listening whether you agree or not, and thank you again for your thoughtful repsonse above. It is important to keep in mind that we are fighting for the same thing...the protection of wild salmon and steelhead. To me and I think to you also this comes above the rest of it.

-Thomas Buehrens

Kurwin, John. “State Biologists and Commercial Hatchery Working to Remove Atlantic Salmon from Scatter Creek.” Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife. July 18, 2003.

McClure, Robert. “Farmed Salmon not so safe, report says.” Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
July, 30, 2003.

Weber, Michael L. “What Price Farmed Fish?: A Review of the Environmental and Social Costs of Farming Carnivorous Fish.” 2003. SeaWeb Aquaculture Clearinghouse.

No this is the article and a quote from it. It was written about six months later than the one you quoted.

"A week ago, the journal Science published a study concluding that farm-raised salmon are loaded with PCBs. The researchers found that wild salmon were less contaminated, if only slightly. This week, the Washington State Health Department had even worse news. It seems that Puget Sound's wild salmon contain at least as many PCBs as the farmed fish, if not more."

Follow the link to the next story and see that EWG (enviromental Working Group) got 2.5 million to wage war on the farms and do a study in conjunction with the PCT (Pew Charitable trusts)

You know for 2.5 million I will chnge my own mind on Farms. HAHAHA