Conservation group calls on national governments to tighten protective measures for Atlantic salmon

The Atlantic Salmon Federation's 'State of the Populations' report suggests the number of wild Atlantic salmon continues to plummet.

The report shows an estimated 496,000 salmon successfully spawned in all continental rivers this year, down 15 per from last year.

The Federation is asking national governments, gathered at the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization in Maine this week, to tighten protection measures in their home waters, including minimizing or eliminating threats from open net-pen salmon aquiculture, preventing the harvest of salmon from threatened and endangered populations, and ensuring that all in-river fisheries are conducted sustainability.

Federation's Steve Sutton says these measures include ending fish kills at hydroelectric dams and curtailing the transfer of disease and the escape of fish from open net-pen salmon aquaculture sites.

The region with the highest decline of salmon numbers in North America was Newfoundland and parts of southern Labrador while rivers in southern Labrador and Quebec, remain relatively healthy.

The Restigouche Rriver in New Brunswick showed solid returns, however still fell below historic averages.