Sointula greets the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society with salmon signs.

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society visits North Island

A large crowd holding up salmon signs greeted the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society at the dock in Sointula on Aug. 8.

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society’s (SSCS) “Operation Virus Hunt”, targeting salmon farms on the B.C. coast, is drawing attention to concerns that diseases from farmed Atlantic Salmon are harming wild salmon stocks.

According to the SSCS’s Facebook page which is tracking their journey across the coast, on Monday, Aug. 8 the SSCS’s ship, the Martin Sheen (named after the famous actor/activist from Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now and Terrence Malick’s Badlands), headed into Sointula, Malcom Island and spent the night. When the ship docked, it was greeted by a crowd of people holding fish signs.

Alexandra Morton and the crew reportedly received a very warm welcome from their supporters.

Morton then gave a speech along with Vancouver Island native and crew member Katj Walther, both focusing on the SSCS’s perspective on protecting the oceans.

The Martin Sheen departed early the next morning and continued east to further investigate open pen Atlantic Salmon fish farms.

They were joined onboard by Ernest Alfred Kwakwabalas of the ‘Namgis Nation and Melissa Willie of the Dzawada’enuxw Nation, witnessing first hand the impact the farmed Atlantic salmon are having on wild Pacific salmon.

The crew used an ROV camera to scan the sea floor around some of the pens. The images appeared to show large build ups of fish feces and fish skin.

According to the SSCS, the build up of feces has been shown to create large dead zones around these farms. Mussel samples for biopsy were also taken from the waters surrounding the farm.

On Tuesday, Aug. 9 the Martin Sheen was welcomed into Gwayasdums (Gilford Island) and invited for a feast hosted by the Musgamagw Dzawada’enuxw Nation.

Established in 1977, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS) is an international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization.

Their mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species.

Sea Shepherd uses innovative direct-action tactics to investigate, document, and take action when necessary to expose and confront illegal activities on the high seas.

Just Posted

North Island Eagles minor rep ockey organization hand out year-end awards in Port McNeill

It was quite the season and then some for minor rep hockey here in the North Island.

North Island resident to campaign on climate, economy for Liberal Party seat in Ottawa

Peter Schwarzhoff joins race for the second time in North Island-Powell River riding

Press release: Port Alice Health Centre service model announced

“a sustainable and dependable model of health care service delivery in Port Alice is a priority”

First annual Pride Day coming to Port Hardy in August

Pride contributes to a more inclusive and safe community for LGBTQ+ identifying individuals.

Blaney plan helps seniors late with taxes

Simple solution to important issue: North Island-Powell River MP

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of Victoria Day

How much do you know about the monarch whose day we celebrate each May?

Top women’s hockey player Natalie Spooner coming to B.C.

Natalie Spooner special guest at annual Grindstone charity weekend in Kelowna

Take-home drug testing kits latest pilot to help curb B.C.’s overdose crisis

Researchers look to see if fentanyl testing could be a useful tool for those who use drugs alone

Facebook takes down anti-vaxxer page that used image of late Canadian girl

Facebook said that the social media company has disabled the anti-vaccination page

Search crews rescue kids, 6 and 7, stranded overnight on Coquitlam mountain

Father and two youngsters fall down a steep, treacherous cliff while hiking Burke Mountain

Raptors beat Bucks 118-112 in 2OT thriller

Leonard has 36 points as Toronto cuts Milwaukee’s series lead to 2-1

‘Teams that win are tight’: B.C. Lions search for chemistry at training camp

The Lions added more than 50 new faces over the off-season, from coaching staff to key players

Rescue crews suspend search for Okanagan kayaker missing for three days

71-year-old Zygmunt Janiewicz was reported missing Friday

B.C. VIEWS: Reality of our plastic recycling routine exposed

Turns out dear old China wasn’t doing such a great job

Most Read