Rapid growth leads to hearing loss in farmed salmon

A new article led by Tormey Reimer, a Melbourne University Masters graduate, reveals that about half of farmed salmon are deaf due to accelerated growth in the aquaculture industry. Tormey and colleagues discovered that fast-growing fish were three times more likely to have ear bone deformities, leading to substantial hearing loss.
In this pursuit article, co-author Associate Professor Tim Dempster explains that these results “raise serious questions about the welfare of farmed fish” as the deformity is irreversible and becomes worse over time.

Earbones from the same farmed Atlantic salmon. The left is normal, while the right has 90 per cent vaterite deformation. Picture: Tormey Reimer