Please Don’t eat farmed salmon this Christmas

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In the lead up to Christmas, over 2 million farmed salmon are likely to die prematurely each month on farms along the Scottish west coast and islands. Farmed salmon has no place on our festive menus, and certainly not on sustainable ones.

Salmon Farming: why it’s not a cause for festive cheer
Since the 1970s, global populations of wild Atlantic salmon have declined by around 70%, from 8-10 million to just 3 million today. Open-net salmon farming has been shown to be one of the causes of this decline.
As salmon farming in Scotland continues to grow exponentially it spreads potentially fatal parasitic sea lice from farmed to wild fish. The threat to wild fish is further escalated by a rise in farmed fish escapes and as a result increased likelihood of extinction from genetic dilution.
In 2021, the Scottish salmon industry produced over 200,000 annual tonnes of Atlantic salmon. By 2030 it aims to produce 400,000 tonnes per year.
While the industry looks forward to increasing revenues, the true cost of producing this volume of farmed Atlantic salmon isn’t a cause for festive cheer.
Salmon farming wreaks environmental havoc  
Salmon farming is not an environmentally-friendly menu option. It wreaks havoc on the surrounding environment, has severe costs in terms of resources and carbon use and it leads to the immense suffering of millions of fish – both wild and farmed.
The unsustainable practice of open-net salmon farming is a significant cause of the dramatic decline in populations of wild Atlantic salmon and the integrity of Scotland’s coastal ecosystems.


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Blakewell Fishery’s Christmas Competition is always a highlight of the local game fishing calendar and this year competitors enjoyed some great sport beneath the winter sunshine. The trout seized anglers fly’s from the start of the event with rods bent all around the lake during the first hour. The twenty eight anglers landed a total of 168 trout; twenty eight six fish limit bags!

Four double figure trout were landed the best to the rod of Peter Fairclough weighed a touch over 13lb.

img_3771Peter Fairclough – 13lb Rainbow Trout

Phill Colwill landed an 11lb 2oz rainbow trout, Peter Furze a rainbow of 11lb 1oz and James Thomas a rainbow of 10lb 9oz.

img_3776 James Thomas – Rainbow Trout 10lb 9oz

The winning bag of the day was taken by Pete Furze and totalled 28lb 4oz, runner up was Phil Colwill 25lb 14oz, third Peter Fairclough 24lb 5oz and forth James Thomas 23lb 6oz.

Double figure trout for Phil Colwill, James Thomas and Peter furze


Several brown trout were also brought to the scales the best a fish of 3lb 14oz to the rod of Brian Howarth.

img_3791A pleasing brown that seized my damsel fly nymph.

The competition was punctuated by a delicious stew cooked by the Blakewell team and the packed tea room was filled with  chatter as friends old and new exchanged tales and experiences.

img_1500Mulled wine, stew and minced pies!

img_3806Reflections in the lake

img_3800Moorhens are just one of many birds at Blakewell

Richard and John Nickel were pleased to have Simon Kidd sales and marketing manager at Snowbee, fishing the competition and donating some great tackle prizes for the end of day draw.

img_3816Simon Kidd of Snowbee

img_3796The path to the lake

img_3815There are fish everywhere at Blakewell