Could AquaBounty GMO salmon escape containment causing ecological havoc?


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This post is a summary of the containment measures used for AquAdvantage salmon. See Risk assessment and mitigation of AquAdvantage salmon for the full details.

Aqua Bounty explains these containment methods in the environmental assessment that they submitted to the FDA. The containment methods are biological, physical, and environmental.

The most important way to prevent AquAdvantage salmon from breeding with wild salmon is to use only fish that can not breed (sterile fish). . . Triploid fish are used all over the world as a way to prevent farmed or stocked fish from breeding.

Because a small percentage of AquAdvantage salmon could be capable of reproduction, additional containment methods are necessary. . . .These containment methods mean less than 1% of fish could escape (see page 55). . .

The egg production facility is located in Prince Edward Island, Canada. . . .In the past, Atlantic salmon lived in this area, but over fishing, barriers to migration, and acid rain have made them locally extinct so any escaped eggs that managed to grow into adult female fish would not find a male to mate with.

The fish production facility is located at a high altitude in Panama near a river that drains to the Pacific ocean. . . . If they try to move out to sea, though, the high temperatures in the lower parts of the river would kill salmon (see page 52). While escaped salmon might live in the upper river for a short time, they would not find any males to mate with, and escape to the Pacific ocean is very unlikely.

Read full, original post: Preventing escape of GMO salmon