The Margin: Washington seeks fishermen’s help catching escapees from Atlantic salmon farm

Residents of Washington state are notoriously wary of out-of-staters — especially Californians — moving in and ruining the local quality of life. But now the state is putting out an urgent call to help repel a new crop of unwanted invaders from the East Coast: Atlantic salmon.

A massive number of Atlantic salmon escaped after a fish farm’s net pen containing about 305,000 salmon collapsed in the San Juan Islands, north of Seattle, last weekend. Initial estimates were that 4,000 to 5,000 Atlantic salmon escaped, but a report Thursday said the entire farm was destroyed. Now the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is appealing to local fishermen to catch as many as they can before the non-native fish cause ecological problems.

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