ADIMS is not opposed to sustainable aquaculture but many of the existing industry practices are harmful to the marine environment and not sustainable. These practices destroy habitat for marine birds and other marine life and result in a deterioration and loss of marine areas for other uses and values such as tourism, recreation, other fisheries (both sport and commercial), and safe anchorages.
Some of these harmful practices are:
2) Predator Netting & Oyster Grow-Out: Predator netting is used by industry over areas seeded with clams. 61% of the critical bird habitat in Baynes Sound is covered in predator netting (Wan, P. and L.I. Bendell, 2010) and oyster grow-out. Both of these industry activities render these areas inaccessible for birds and other marine life for feeding. The netting is often not secured properly, creating a hazard to marine life and humans.
Marine Pollution Bulletin Article: an overview of the efficacy, impacts, and pollution of anti-predator netting used by the shellfish industry in the production of clams. It also suggests a possible alternate method to increase productivity.
Department of Biological Sciences, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6, Canada
3) Beach Modification: Shellfish growers create berms by using heavy equipment to move beach rocks (cobble). This beach cobble is critical spawning habitat for marine life, including the Plainfin Midshipman (forage fish).
4) Industry Debris: Industry debris constantly washes up on the shores of Denman Island. Since 2005 ADIMS, with the help of many Denman Island residents, have held an annual beach clean-up. Each year between 2-4 tonnes of debris is collected, 90% of which is from the shellfish industry. Once the clean-up is complete, the debris just continues to wash up year round. Most of the industry debris is plastics and styrofoam which are leaching toxins into the environment. What we see on our shores is just the tip of the iceberg.
5) Destruction ‘Predator’ Species: Marine species including moon-snails, starfish, and crabs, are seen as predators, and routinely destroyed or removed from beaches by shellfish industry workers. This degrades marine biodiversity.