Russia’s “hybrid war” on the western economy and institutions has taken a new and most nefarious turn.
President Vladimir Putin is now utilizing the power of fish in an effort to attack Great Britain by sea.
The Russian leader is an avid angler, which may have informed his decision to mobilize marine life.
According to Britain’s Daily Mail hundreds of Russian pink salmon have been found along the northeast coast of England, over 10,000 miles from their natural habitat.
Britain’s Environment Agency says the unwelcome guests pose a threat to native Atlantic salmon found along British coasts, by competing with them for food and habitat.
The EA has now issued a warning for fishermen to be on the lookout for Russian salmon who may be attempting to infiltrate British waters:
The EA said about 200 Pacific pink salmon were caught in the Yorkshire and North East coastal net fishery and several had been caught by individual anglers in the River Tyne and River Coquet.
There have also been confirmed catches in rivers in Scotland and Western Ireland recently.
An advisory issued by the EA says ‘there is a possibility that these fish might be present in other rivers throughout England and Wales’.
The Mail says the roots of the Kremlin’s operation date back to the 1950s, at the height of the cold war:
It is thought the non-native species originates from the White Sea region of northern Russia and the Kola Peninsula.
The Russians introduced thousands of the fish here between 1950 and 2003 to develop a commercial net fishery.
The species has now established self-sustaining populations in rivers in Russia, Finland and Norway.
Mark Lloyd, chief executive of the Angling Trust, told the Daily Mail that the North Sea region is under full scale Russian (salmon) invasion and that people should kill any Russian salmon they find:
“The Pacific salmon were stocked by the Russians to make a commercial fishery and they did what salmon do – roam around trying to find somewhere else to go.
“I was fishing in Norway recently and they had caught them there too so its affected the whole of the region.
“The advice to anglers is if they are sure it’s a Pacific salmon they should kill it when they catch it and report it to the Environment Agency.”
The wild Atlantic salmon normally found in Britain’s home waters are in fact an endangered species, thus the British government is taking no chances with the foreign fish.
There is no word yet on what additional sanctions may be leveled on Moscow by the British or American governments in response to the Kremlin’s latest ploy.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.