ST. JOHN'S, N.L. -- A company that reported a mass die-off of farmed salmon more than a month ago says the death toll rings in at an estimated 2.6 million -- just under half of all its fish.

The Norwegian-owned Northern Harvest Sea Farms made the announcement yesterday, after the provincial government announced it was suspending licences at the company's affected sites.

Fisheries and Land Resources Minister Gerry Byrne says he learned Friday that the number dead fish was higher the company initially reported.

The managing director of Northern Harvest Sea Farms Newfoundland says the suspension affects 10 of the company's 13 sites.

Jamie Gaskill says the company accepts the licence suspensions and is focusing on cleaning up its pens.

The company says two million fish died from a prolonged period of high water temperatures that it reported to government on Sept. 3, and another 600,000 fish that may have been "weakened by the temperature event" died later.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 12, 2019.