Donate to the Q13 FOX Cares and Les Schwab Holiday Toy Drive

Nearly 120,000 non-native Atlantic salmon recovered from Puget Sound, state says

BELLINGHAM, Wash. — The state says nearly 120,000 Atlantic Salmon that escaped farming pens have been recovered from Puget Sound waters.

The Department of Natural Resources posted this statement:

“Cooke Aquaculture has now removed a total of 119,266 Atlantic salmon from the damaged cage structure at the Cypress Island farm site #2.

Crews began Sunday at first light and retrieved a total of 52,000 fish from four separate pens. On Saturday, 62,100 fish were removed from the site while 5,166 had been retrieved earlier in the week.

Observations from crews working on site, including divers, indicate there are still fish contained within the nets and the removal of those fish will continue through Monday.”

Tribe: Anglers have caught 20,000 farmed Atlantic salmon

A Native American tribe says its anglers have caught about 20,000 fish following the collapse of a commercial net pen rearing farmed Atlantic salmon in Puget Sound.

The Lummi Nation on Monday said its fishermen have brought in about 200,000 pounds of the non-native species since the tribe declared a state of emergency Thursday.

Cooke Aquaculture’s marine salmon farm in the San Juan Islands failed over a week ago, releasing thousands of farmed Atlantic salmon into waters. The facility held about 305,000 fish.

Tribal and state officials have urged people catch as many as possible.

Conservation group to sue after 300,000 farmed Atlantic salmon spill into Puget Sound

State officials over the weekend formed a response team involving multiple agencies. The governor also put on hold any new permits for net pens until the incident is investigated.

The tribe and others are worried the invasive fish will out-compete native fish.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.