August 25th, 2017 | Food Security, Our Food, deformity, disease, environment, First Nations, food safety, George Quocksister Jr., indigenous, Laich-Kwil-Tach Nation, pacific, salmon, salmon farms, unhealthy
Source: CBC News
Hereditary chief George Quocksister Jr., 68, from the Laich-Kwil-Tach Nation has been gathering footage of unhealthy salmon all month. Quocksister has been going from salmon farm to salmon farm along the east coast of Vancouver Island from Cambell River to Alert Bay.
“I’m examining them and seeing what’s going on in them, and it’s sure not very good,” he said on the phone from a boat in a remote area off the coast.
“I’m not a scientist, right, but you can obviously tell they have a disease,” said Quocksister. “It’s beyond horrible.”
The footage has been edited into a video and posted online by independent biologist and marine activist Alexandra Morton.
“I’ve been at this for at least 25 years, very, very intensively, and I’ve never seen footage like this. I made the point in the film, this isn’t one farm, it’s all of them,” said Morton.
She readily admits the video has been selectively cut from hours of footage to show the worst of what Quocksister found at the salmon farms, which are run by Cermaq, Marine Harvest, and Grieg.
“There are also fish that aren’t diseased that are down deeper, but there are diseased fish in those farms and those are the fish that I’m concerned about, so I’m showing them,” said Morton.
She says if anyone — especially the Department of Fisheries and Oceans — is interested in viewing all of the footage, she and Quocksister are ready to make it available.
Cermaq, Marine Harvest and Grieg declined to respond to requests for comment. Marine Harvest deferred to the B.C. Salmon Farmers Association, which represents all three companies.