High levels of sea louse infestation on fish farms have been recorded in reports from the Scottish Government’s Fish Health Inspectorate.
The threat to wild salmon from sea lice associated with their farmed cousins has long been a concern (ENDS Report 341, pp 34-35). The Scottish aquaculture industry’s Code of Good Practice sets threshold infestation levels.
Farms conduct weekly counts and are meant to stay below the threshold, but it is not statutory. Reports show the limit was breached in 68 inspections in 2009-10. There were a further 48 examples of farms not recording lice numbers correctly and 52 cases of other lice-related issues.