Scottish Government should carry out a review of the numbers of Atlantic Salmon killed by protected species to compare numbers against human exploitation figures

The impact / numbered juvenile or adult Atlantic Salmon killed each year by Protected Species which predate on salmon is unknown. The Scottish Government / Marine Scotland has never conducted such a study and no data exists , however it us widely acceptedthat predation from protected species is a big problem at present for Arlantic Salmon at all it's various life cycle stages.

It is no coincidence that as protected species numbers have risen as a direct result of their protection, Atlantic Salmon populations have declined at the same rate.

If the SG are serious about salmon conservation and the sustainability of a multi million pound tourism/leisure economy then something has to be done about the protected species which are a big factor in the salmons decline. 

The economic value of these predators is negligible in comparison to the economic value of Atlanic Salmon in Scotland.  The SG should do this comparison to fully understand the difference.

Legislation needs to change to allow less protection of these protected predators and more protection should sway in the balance to help the salmon

The Atlantic Salmon is an endangered species whilst all it's protected predators are not!  Something seriously wrong here with this situation - SG take note.

The protected  predators which need their protection re-evaluated / downgraded and their impacts assessed by SG are:

Grey Seals

Common Seals


Common Merganser (or Goosander)

Red Breasted Merganser

Terns (various)


Harbour Porpoise

Bottlenose Dolphin

Common Dolphin

Atlantic White Sided Dolphin

White Beaked Dolphin

Rissos Dolphin





















Why the contribution is important

The impact of protected predators of Atlantic Salmon have a significant impact on the morality of all life stages of Atlantic Salmon and the SG need to assess this impact and revise current legislation accordingly to provide greater protection for Atlantic Salmon.

by Electrofisher on July 24, 2015 at 07:55AM

Current Rating

Average score : 3.5
Based on : 9 votes


  • Posted by sjrobinson July 24, 2015 at 11:36

    Agree completely seals and dolphins are decimating and physically damaging salmon stocks in the Tweed Dee Don Tay and other estuaries.
  • Posted by marinescotland3 July 24, 2015 at 16:05

    An interesting suggestion which presumably is seen to compliment rather than replace the kill licence proposal. You will of course be aware of the existing licensing regime around some of these predators. You may also be aware of the European Commission’s “REFIT programme", which is essentially a retrospective fitness check of key EU legislation the latest instalment of which will examine the Birds and Habitats Directives.[…]/index_en.htm
  • Posted by devronmac July 24, 2015 at 16:36

    Agree wholeheartedly. Sawbill Ducks and Herons could perhaps be added to the list.
  • Posted by bradan July 25, 2015 at 08:12

    Agreed. A second order question is the level of the annual smolt run. Smolts are a good indication of the health of a spawning population and the ability of a river to support young salmon. If rivers are still producing good numbers of smolts then spawning numbers are sufficient at current rates. Why then aren't smolt runs counted as part of the 'scientific data?
  • Posted by boabs55 July 26, 2015 at 21:54

    This was supposed to be a chance to do something to save the Salmon /Sea Trout.To me it has completely failed on all counts based on what i have seen read so far with this WFR. Result if it all goes on like this will RIP Salmon/Sea Trout
  • Posted by mwb July 27, 2015 at 10:33

    I agree, something is seriously wrong here. If the SG even carried out a rough calculation of the number of mature and juvenile salmon being killed by the protected predators, they would realise that it is not the rods that are the cause of the decline of our wild stocks.
    PS If I am ever lucky enough to catch a salmon my priority is to return it.
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