After record-breaking mortalities in 2022, the salmon farming industry in Scotland is facing another turbulent year of shockingly high fish deaths and reduced harvest forecasts, which is already being part-blamed on blooms of micro jellyfish.

Earlier this year, I went on an official visit to a salmon farm off Mull and saw an example of a recently stocked site in good health. But given the huge mortalities this is not the full picture, so at the beginning of August, I visited a site that anti-salmon-farm activist Don Staniford had heard was in the midst of a mortalities crisis.

Read the full article here: Scottish salmon: What dead fish I saw tells us about sector

As well as an explainer about jellyfish here: Why are tiny jellyfish a big threat to salmon farming

The occasional mort, disposed of because of disease or gill-health problems, is a matter of routine. But there were signs elsewhere that these fish were part of something beyond the average – a bigger, more troubling mortality event.

Last year was a record-breaker for mortalities across the Scottish salmon industry, with death figures doubling to 15 million. This year, if early data is anything to go by, promises to smash through those records. June losses have been higher than for any previous June: 1.46 percent compared with 1.33% in June 2022 and 0.54% in June 2018. 

The conservation charity WildFish recently pointed out that, so far this year, more than 5.6 million salmon have died on Scottish farms, 1.6 million more than the same period last year.

In one of the sections of footage Bakkafrost's Geasgill farm used in this video it's possible to see nets of dead fish being hauled up from pens. in another dead fish float on the surface after having been treated by a hydrolicer. Footage was filmed by Scamon Scotland.