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€1.7M for Irish Research into Wild Farmed Salmon Interactions

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE CORK (Ireland)

Research investment for UCC
 
Investigating the impact of escaped farmed salmon on wild Irish Atlantic salmon populations is one of five UCC projects which has been awarded €8.5m in Government funding today. A co-led project brings the UCC figure to €9.3m. The portion for wild/farmed interactions is €1,709,586

The salmon project will exploit new techniques in population genomics and quantitative genetics to investigate how Atlantic salmon escaping from farms reduce the survival potential of wild salmon when they breed together in rivers. The interbreeding of wild and farmed salmon reduces the productivity of rivers and is detrimental to fisheries and biodiversity.

The salmon project is one of 24 being funded to the tune of almost €40 million distributed via Science Foundation Ireland’s Investigators Programme and funded by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation.  

Principal Investigator (PI): Philip McGinnity
Research Body: UCC
Co-PI Research Body: Marine Institute

Award Title: Wild farmed interactions in a changing world: formulation of a predictive methodology to inform environmental best practice to secure long-term sustainability of global wild and farm fish populations

Award Amount: €1,709,586

Summary: "We will exploit new analytical techniques in population genomics and quantitative genetics to investigate mechanisms by which Atlantic salmon escaping from farms reduce the survival potential of wild salmon, when they breed together in rivers. This reduces the productivity of rivers and is detrimental to fisheries and biodiversity. The issue is limiting the expansion of the salmon farming industry, in Ireland and worldwide. Our group has worked in this area more than two decades and has a large bank of archival and contemporary material. Our results will allow for better management and enable sustainable expansion of this valuable food industry."