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Fire hits Tasmanian salmon producer

by Carl Hyland 25 Nov 2020 11:11 UTC
Pen on fire © Huon Aquaculture

Fifty thousand fish that escaped a salmon giant's Huon pen following fire damage to infrastructure has been labelled a boon for local anglers.

Tasmanian Salmon producer, Huon Aquaculture said in a statement released on Monday 23rd November that a fire broke out in one of its Zuid pool pens, burning it to the waterline on Monday morning with approximately 50,000 adult Atlantic salmon weighing between 4 and 6 kilos being lost to the surrounding waters.

In a statement, Huon chief Peter Bender stated "We are estimating that we have lost between 50,000 - 52,000 4kg fish and in accordance with our reporting requirements, we have notified MAST, EPA and DPIPWE Marine Farm Branch. "An investigation into the cause of the fire is under way and we are not ruling anything out at this early stage, and we encourage anyone who saw the fire to contact us."

Mr Bender said studies of previous fish escapes along with the 2018 IMAS survey indicated it was unlikely the escaped salmon would have significant impact on native marine fauna.

I imagine that local anglers (and visitors) will be out in droves, trying to catch a Christmas salmon and judging on what's being caught already, I reckon light jigheads on soft plastic lures would be an option as well as big bright, Rapala type lures. These fish will put up a tremendous fight and at 4-6kilos are well worthy an adversary. The bag limit per person is 12 fish per day according to the Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries Tasmania and a possession limit of 24 applies in the home.

Locations to catch fish would be Garden island Creek up to Peachies Bay or Surges Bay at Waterloo and Port Esperence.

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