Fish farmer Scottish Sea Farms (SFF) said it was to take delivery of a purpose-built workboat to increase response times to gill health issues.
Costing £1.9m, the Fair Isle – named after the island between Shetland and Orkney – will service the firm’s more northerly sites, delivering preventative veterinary treatment.
Gill health is thought to be one of the biggest challenges facing salmon producers globally, and as such is recognised by Scotland’s 10-year Farmed Fish Health Framework as a priority area for action.
SFF head of fish welfare Ralph Bickerdike said: “Recent years have seen significant investment in the surveillance of fish health and the farming environment, with water quality monitored on a daily basis and gill health routinely assessed by our farmers to detect any challenges and highlight where pre-emptive action is needed.
“Having a second dedicated workboat takes this ‘prevention over cure’ approach a key step further, enabling us to administer the best veterinary care at the earliest opportunity.”
The Fair Isle is the second vessel to be built by Nauplius Workboats on behalf of SFF after Sandoyne Lass, which joined the fleet in 2017 and services the company’s Westerbister farm in Orkney.