A cargo ship crashed into a trout farm in Denmark, now officials are urging fishermen to catch the 80,000 escapees.
A shipping accident on Horsens Fjord near the Jutland peninsula caused the premature release of so many rainbow trout that authorities and environmental officials are asking, almost begging, fishermen to catch them.
Søren Knabe a member of the Danish Angler’s Association and chair of the environmental group Vandpleje Fyn said, “Sea trout are currently coming up into Funen streams to spawn, and sea trout eggs are a favorite food for rainbow trout,” said Knabe. “The escaped rainbow trout will follow right behind the tails of the sea trout and eat their eggs.”
The escape could not have happened at a worse time.
These rainbows are in the six to seven pound range. Since these fish will almost certainly make their way into local streams and rivers the possibility of a fishing bonanza is on the horizon.
Knabe said, “I encourage anyone with fishing gear to get it out and go fishing in the Little Belt.” Anglers everywhere are suddenly looking for a map.
The fish would have been worth nine million kroner or about $1.3 million, but are now fodder for anglers looking to enjoy some ‘free’ fishing. As much as many would like to enjoy the sudden fish lottery, researchers are looking at the real possibility that the farmed trout will disrupt free range and wild sea trout populations.
Fish farms are not the favorite subject of Danish science. Dr. Jon Svendsen of Denmark’s National Institute of Aquatic Resources said, “Fish farms pose a much greater threat to the local marine environment, mainly because of nutrient releases into the local environment, which may be associated with algae blooms and subsequent hypoxia”
Whatever the case, there are a lot of rainbow trout out there for fishermen willing to take advantage of them.