Researchers and scientists at the Department of Fisheries are trying to determine why cod stocks in the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence haven’t recovered and they are pointing the finger at grey seals.
The situation is so serious, the report states, that Atlantic cod stocks could be locally wiped out in the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence by mid-century — even without any commercial fishing taking place.
The paper, published in the Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, says the death rate now stands at 50 per cent for adult Gulf cod five years and older. Samples showed adult cod made up a large part of the grey seal diet in the overwintering area off St. Paul’s Island, Cape Breton.
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