Good Fish Guide
Bass, seabass (Farmed)
Method of production - Farmed
Production country - Europe
Production method - Open net pens
Fish type - White round fish
Turkey and Greece are the biggest producers of sea bass in Europe followed by France, Spain and Italy. Seabass farmed in open net pens causes some environmental concerns. These concerns include pollution from both nutrients and organic matters that lead to environmental changes; escaped farmed fish; use of chemicals in production; interaction with local wildlife sometimes including lethal predator control and some concerns regarding regulatory controls. Seabass are carnivorous fish that require more fish in their diet that they actually produce, leading to a net loss of marine proteins and oils, the fish used to make their feed cannot be assured to be sourced from a sustainable supply.
Bass or seabass belongs to a family of spiny-finned fish called Moronidae, which are closely related to groupers. Bass breed from March to mid-June, mostly in April, in British coastal and offshore waters. From January to March in the Bay of Biscay and from February to May in the English Channel and eastern Celtic Sea. It is a long-lived and slow growing species - up to 30 years of age, and can achieve a length of up to 1m with a weight of 12kg. Male bass mature at 31-35cm (aged 3-6 years) and females mature at 40-45cm (aged 5-8 years). Once mature, bass may migrate within UK coastal waters and occasionally further offshore. Increases in sea water temperature in recent decades has likely led to a more northerly distribution of seabass as it is now found further north into the North Sea. Climate warming may also have lengthened the time adult seabass spend in the summer feeding areas. After spawning, seabass tend to return to the same coastal sites each year.
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Open net pens
Seabass are farmed in open net pens allows which allows for interaction with the surrounding environment and therefore has to be managed in such a way as to minimise negative environmental and ecological impacts. Negative impacts associated with open net
Based on method of production, fish type, and consumer rating: only fish rated 2 and below are included as an alternative in the list below . Click on a name to show the sustainable options available.
FAO Information on Sea Bass in the Mediterranean: http://www.fao.org/fishery/culturedspecies/Dicentrarchus_labrax/en
Health status of wild and cultured sea bass in the northern Adriatic Sea: Vet. Med. - Czech, 47, 2002 (8): 222-226
THE IMPACT OF A FISH FARM ON A BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN POPULATION IN THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA: halassas, 2005, 21 (2): 65-70 An International Journal of Marine Science
Belant, J. L., Tyson, L. A. and Mastrangelo, P. A. 2000. Effects of lethal control at aquaculture facilities on populationsof piscivorous birds. Wildlife Society Bulletin, 28: 379-384.
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