Salmo domesticus

Salmo Domesticus simply put is Domesticated Salmon. Domesticus is actually Latin for, ” Belonging to the house.” In other words belonging to the same house, but not being brought up the same way. In other words, ” Salmon Farming.”  Salmon farming started at an experimental stage in the 1960’s, and became an actual industry in Norway in the 1980’s. All in order to modify and create a system  to grow bigger fish, at a faster rate. Norway is considered to be the world’s largest producing salmon country, as far as fish farms go. It has extended not only to the United states, but also in Canada, Scotland, and Chile.

After reading about Salmo Domesticus I would only infer that it is indeed a curse, only because it threatens the native species in many ways, on top of our own species as humans. The Salmo Domesticus can outperform the native salmon for a short time, but in the long haul they don’t sustain the energy they need to travel up river. They threaten the native salmon once they escape and move into the local salmon runs. While millions of farmed salmon escape every year, they can bring disease which is detrimental to the native salmon. The fish farms benefit, while the native population loses. This is not only a threat to other salmon, but also us as consumers. The consumption of farmed salmon can also pose internal issues with humans from pollutants that can increase antibiotic resistance in our gut. Think about it. These people are making money off of these fish farms not only to kill off existing salmon, but they are also potentially killing us as well.

One of the quotes that stood out the most to me in this chapter was, ” We can farm the tigers of the sea, as long as we feed them hay.” -Rick Barrows at USDA.

My question for the USDA is, ” When did this even become okay? ”

And my rebuttal is, ” Once we do this though, What was once a predator, could potentially now be prey.” Prey meaning a less chance at survival. Take this analogy for example, ” You cannot take a wolves’ canine teeth and claws out, and expect it to live to it’s primal potential.” In theory, it is no longer a wolf. In turn, it is just a domesticated dog. The same concept applies to salmon.

2 thoughts on “Salmo domesticus”

  1. I agree with your argument that domesticated salmon are a curse, and I didn’t even think about the potential negative health consequences that it could have for humans. I really like the analogy that you gave about the wolf. Salmon farming is removing all of the traits that make them good, wild organisms just because it’s cheaper to mass produce them that way. We are effectively undoing what centuries of evolution has created in these fish not only in the farms, but also as you said, in the wild when the fish escape and breed with the wild populations and hurt their genome.

  2. Sadly, like many good things, farming fish has taken on a negative light. I believe it started out with truly good intentions. During the 1960s and 70s, the Atlantic salmon population was near extinct and the hopes of seeing a rebound were bleak. Knowing that thousands of people were starving in many landlocked countries, and that the fishing industry was feeding thousands, if not millions of people throughout the world, the concept behind cultivating fish was brilliant. Little did they know that it would take a turn for the worse. Although, I have to admit, I really do like the fact salmon production is now a thriving industry in the Southern Hemisphere. In some ways, that’s pretty amazing. Now, if the cultivators can figure out how to farm fish appropriately, and without harming the environment, then I will see it as a blessing once again.

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