A FISH farm is to be installed 3.2 kilometres off San Juan de los Terreros (Pulpi).
An annual 3,000 tons of gilthead bream and sea bass will be raised in the 113-hectare installation and processed at plants in Pulpi and Aguilas (Murcia).
The Junta stipulated that the installation should not be put in place between April and October, given the importance of this protected area to shearwaters and storm petrels during this period. Once built, maintenance and the presence of boats and crews must be kept to a minimum during these months.
Special attention must also be paid to marine wildlife liable to become entangled in the netting of the 23 cages. Should this happen, operatives must advise the regional government and the Threatened Species Recovery Centre at Almohallas. Illumination should be kept to a minimum at night owing to its negative impact on wildlife.
The regional government has also banned the ‘pinger’ alarms that would have a negative impact on the population of bottlenose dolphins.
Any interaction between fish farm personnel and the dolphins inevitably drawn to the area is to be avoided, the Junta stressed. They should also ensure that their boats do not collide with the pilot whales sometimes found in the area.