Almost all of Finland’s migrant fish are threatened. At the moment the endangered fish species of Finland have no protection; they are like outlaws. For example the Finnish landlocked salmon (Salmon’s subspieces Salmo salar m. sebago only lives in inland waters) is more endangered than the Saimaa ringed seal (Pusa hispida saimensis). A study shows that only 0.04 % of the smolts survive and reach sexual maturity. This means that only one individual in 2500 smolts will spawn.
Additionally, the sea trout parr (Salmo trutta trutta) is critically endangered in Finland. Hydro-electric power plants previously destroyed the robust populations of the sea trout, but nowadays the main problem is fishing nets. Finland is probably the only civilised state where anybody can fish using nets. In other parts of the world fishing with nets is strongly regulated or banned completely. All the endangered species living in the inland waters of Finland, even the Saimaa ringed seal, face the same threat: fishing nets (both professional and free-time fishermen). The main problem with fishing nets is that they catch almost all the smolts, leaving no fish to spawn.
Finland is also the only nation in the world that allows fishermen to fish using massive trawls in inland waters. Finnish researchers are unanimous: our fishing policy is unsustainable. Policymakers don’t listen. Rather, they are against every positive development. In today’s world with the EU and other institutions, how is it possible that no one outside Finland is not reacting. If Finnish policymakers are this blind or spineless, maybe the EU could invoke for example the Habitats Directive (more formally known as Council Directive 92/43/EEC on the Conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora), and force Finland to alter its fishing policy. We have some successful example (the Przewalski’s horse returning to Mongolia, deforestation in Madagascar) of how pressure / help from the outside world has contributed to the preservation of species or ecosystems in developing countries. At least the EU should wake up now and prevent the local extinction of several fish species.
Salmi P, Auvinen H, Jurvelius J, Sipponen M (2000) Finnish lake fisheries and conservation of biodiversity: coexistence or conflict? Fisheries Management & Ecology 7: 127–138. DOI: 10.1046/j.1365-2400.2000.00183.x
Auvinen H, Jurvelius J, Koskela J, Sipilä T (2005) Comparative use of vendace by humans and Saimaa ringed seal in Lake Pihlajavesi, Finland. Biological Conservation 125(3): 381–389. doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2005.04.008