Farm by farm sea lice data published

Scottish Salmon

SCOTTISH salmon farmers have published farm by farm sea lice data for the first time today, following a commitment made earlier in the year.
Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO) former chief executive Scott Landsburgh told the ongoing inquiry into salmon farming, by the Rural Economy and Connectivity (REC) committee, that the information would be made available on the organisation’s website every month from now on.
Producers agreed at the end of last year to publish sea lice data on a farm by farm basis from 2018, building on existing reporting activities that have been in place for a number of years.
The move was announced by the SSPO during an evidence session of another Holyrood committee, the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform (ECCLR) committee, in March.
Landsburgh told the REC committee this morning that the information, published with a three-month time lag, takes sea lice reporting to a new level.
Salmon farmers want to produce healthy fish and keep lice numbers as low as possible, the SSPO said on its website.
‘Regular detailed health checks of farmed salmon are made at least once a week and lice numbers and the life stages of any lice are recorded.
‘Sharing information about farming activities with other farmers greatly helps the overall control of sea lice on farms and in production areas.
‘Farmers control sea lice using a range of techniques. These have been developed by the salmon farming industry as an integrated sea lice management strategy. The strategy encourages preventative techniques such as keeping fish of only one age group in a farm and fallowing farms after each production cycle.’
Salmon farmers may also use cleaner fish, such as wrasse and lumpfish, as biological controls, as well as medicines, which can be prescribed by a vet, and they increasingly deploy new technology – warm water flushing, for example.
‘This integrated approach to sea lice management ensures that farmers in Scotland co-ordinate their lice control strategies for maximum effectiveness,’ said the SSPO.
Where farms are close to one another, they will stock the same age class of fish and fallow their farms at the same time.
‘This ‘area management’ approach of working together with farming neighbours was pioneered in Scotland.’
To view the data visit


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