According to the CBC, hereditary chief George Quocksister Jr., from the Laich-Kwil-Tach Nation, has spent the past month traveling to salmon farms along the east coast of Vancouver Island documenting the horrific conditions.
Quocksister’s investigation caught the attention of biologist and marine activist Alexandra Morton. She told the CBC: "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.”
The footage reveals blind, emaciated salmon swimming in their own feces. According to the video, a 17-year report discovered that sea lice from one of the fish farms had been killing young wild salmon.
See for yourself.
When a net at a fish factory farm in Washington recently failed, thousands of nonnative Atlantic salmon got loose just off the state's northwestern San Juan Islands. Officials are concerned this could put wild populations at risk for disease as the sea lice from Quocksister’s investigation did.
Factory farms are filthy and overcrowded, making them the perfect breeding grounds for parasites. Last year an outbreak of sea lice stretched from Scandinavia to Chile. Now nearly half of Scotland’s salmon farms are infested with the parasite, which feeds on blood, skin, and slime.
But filth and infestations are just the beginning.
A study in the Journal of Experimental Biology found that salmon bred and raised at fish factory farms are forced to grow at such an accelerated rate that more than half go partially deaf. Another study found that many farmed salmon suffer from severe depression. Known as “drop outs,” depressed salmon float lifelessly.
After their terrible lives at factory farms, many fish face particularly gruesome deaths. Despite fishes’ capacity for pain, the seafood industry treats these innocent beings as mere objects.
A Mercy For Animals undercover investigation at a fish slaughter facility exposed fish being skinned alive. The fish thrashed and fought to escape the workers' knives. As they gasped for oxygen, workers ripped their skin off with pliers.