Tenacious farm salmon live on
By Jake Wray, News Editor
January 9, 2088
The last remaining species of wild salmon in BC is now extinct, the ministry of fisheries and oceans has announced.
Ken Fry, a wildlife biologist with the Ministry of Fisheries and Oceans, said he and his team were holding the last surviving Coho salmon, named Cinderella, in captivity as they attempted to clone a mate for her using stem cells. Sadly, he said, Cinderella contracted an infection in her gills and died.
“Everyone in the lab was absolutely devastated,” Fry told reporters during an emergency press conference Friday. “Reviving the Coho species was always a long shot, but just before Cinderella died, we had made a major breakthrough and our hopes were high.”
Suki Haya, president of salmon conservation non-profit Skeena Wild, said that wild salmon have only existed in captivity for the past decade, so there won’t be any impact on the ecosystem as a result of Cinderella’s death.
“For decades Skeena Wild has warned about the extinction of wild salmon,” she said in a VidLink interview with the Other Press. “As wild salmon populations dwindled and they were sequestered into captivity by the ministry of fisheries and oceans, their absence from wild waters crippled the coastal ecosystem.”
Nevertheless, Haya said, Cinderella’s death is symbolic.
“Now that we have wiped out every single species of wild salmon, I hope Canadians take a hard look at their way of life,” she said. “We should have stopped commercial fishing 100 years ago.”
Dave Michell, a Wet’suwet’en fisherman from the City of Witset, said he has never seen a wild salmon before, though he has heard stories about them from his father and grandmother. Instead, he fishes for farm salmon, which have evolved in startling ways over the past century.
“They’re absolute mother fuckers. They’re hyper-intelligent, like the velociraptors in Jurassic Park 47, and they have long, barbed venomous teeth,” he said. “My ancestors used to simply string a net across the river to catch fish, but I have to use a rifle and drones.”
Michell said fishing farm salmon is a high-risk, low-reward occupation.
“I’ve lost four cousins to farm salmon,” he said. “The craziest part is that farm salmon meat is disgusting. It’s chewy as hell and tastes like rotten eggs.”
BC farm salmon is considered a delicacy among society’s elite in places like New York, Dubai, and Winnipeg.
Fry said his team will continue working in the hopes that they can still create a clone of Cinderella and revive the species.
Only one species has been successfully revived: The dodo bird, two of which were cloned by Filipino scientists in 2054. The two birds slaughtered 459 people and had to be destroyed, according to reports in the Manila Times.