The Atlantic salmon, synonymous with Norway, has been added to a list of species that are endangered or threatened by extinction.
The wild Atlantic salmon has been added to the ‘red list’, a database of threatened, endangered and extinct species in Norway, for the first time after its population halved over the past 40 years.
The fish, an icon of Norway depicted on petroglyphs and featured heavily in Norse mythology, has been classified as “near threatened” on the red list, which is complied by the Species Data Bank, due to declining stocks.
“The main reason the species is on the red list is that we have seen a decline,” Snorre Henriksen, senior advisor at the Species Data Bank, explained to public broadcaster NRK.
Lice and diseases spread by escaped farmed salmon are considered the biggest reason for declining salmon stocks in Norway, according to the species monitor.
“Infections related to salmon farming are also a significant threat,” the Species Data Bank also wrote in its database entry on Atlantic salmon.