For those who like to fish and are worried about the steady decline in fish populations, travel to areas with fish farms can offer scenic beauty and a glimpse into ways the commercial fishing industry copes.
Oxbow Fish Hatchery and Bonneville Dam, Oregon
The Columbia River lies along the border between Oregon and Washington and, like many of the rivers in both states, is host to numerous fish hatcheries where they grow salmon. The Columbia River is dammed at places such as Bonneville Dam, where fish ladders allow salmon to go up river and spawn. The fish hatchery operations at Oxbow Fish Hatchery include collecting eggs, fertilizing the eggs, hatching the eggs, and ponds where they allow the fry to grow through various sizes before they are released into the river systems. Hatchery officials are happy to explain how the operations work. Many of the dams on the Columbia River offer underwater viewing of the salmon during the runs
Ireland Trout and Channels and Kelp
Ireland has a strong fish farm industry supplemented by the age old industry of collecting kelp to fertilizer their crops, especially in Connemara or for other products like iodine. Fish farms inland nurture trout while in channeled areas along the coast, ocean based fish farming nurtures salmon and
Hawaii Menefune Fish Ponds
Hawaii’s mysterious little people known as the Menefune were the first fish farmers on Hawaii. Visitors can check out the Menefune fish pond on Kauai, and at the Lapakahi St. Historical Park on Hawaii’s Big Island, where small ponds show how fresh fish was always ready for the luau and where salt was dried.
China’s Yangtze Fish Industry
The current state of China’s fish industry seemed a bit unstable when we visited two years ago. Above the Three Gorges Dam, we didn’t see much fishing activity except in the side rivers that were often fenced off with nets and boats with empty nets, while below the dam, Black Kite were first spotted, a sure sign of better food supply and river health. The Three Gorges Dam was built without provision for fish locks but has three lanes of locks for commercial traffic.
Portugal Fish Ponds
A visit to Faro and Tavira in the Algarve region in Portugal brought us numerous bird sightings; it was only later that we realized that the constructed dikes were fish ponds where many fish such as mullet, cuttlefish, seabream, eel sole seabass and salmon are grow along with eels. The area has many nice beaches.
In general, if you visit any of these areas, look for the floats mid water, they often mark nets holding in fish.
Overall, we found discovering fish farms on our travels usually involved scenic areas that made our adventure more fun. Want more pictures?
Green Guide Ireland, Michelin, 2003
 Big Island of Hawaii, Moon Handbooks, 2001
Nigel Wheatley, “Where to Watch Birds in Europe and Russia”, 2000