September 24, 2018 Hon. Catherine McKenna Minister, Environment and Climate Change House of Commons Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6 Dear Minister McKenna, Re: Point Pelee National Park region National Marine Conservation Area (NMCA) feasibility study The Canadian Sportfishing Industry Association (CSIA) represents the manufacturers, distributors, retailers and sales agencies which serve the 8 million Canadians who fish as an outdoor heritage activity. According to federal government figures our industry currently generates an annual national economy of over $8.6 billion dollars. In tandem with hunting our customers support over 100,000 jobs in all regions of the country. More Canadians fish for recreation than play golf and hockey combined. Sportfishing in all of the Great Lakes is some of the best in the world and generates a significant economy in Canada and the U.S. We write in support of the Ontario Commercial Fisheries Association (OCFA) position opposing the concept of a feasibility study by Parks Canada to create a NMCA around Point Pelee National Park, Pelee Island and all of Pigeon Bay. The OCFA Executive Director explained their opposition in their letter to you of September 17, 2018 (attached). Our information is a motion proposing such a feasibility study will soon be tabled in the House of Commons, directed to you and the CEO of Parks Canada. This Lake Erie region is very popular with anglers and the fishery for multiple species is very healthy and sustainable under current policy and regulation. CSIA is also opposed to any initiative by ECCC or Parks Canada to establish a policy or legislative foundation for eventual permanent / severely restrictive access closures for recreational anglers in Lake Erie or any of the Great Lakes without a credible basis in independently peer [...]
Originally published on CBC.ca, September 3, 2018 By Hadeel Ibrahim Eel Ground First Nation has struck the first striped bass commercial fishery deal in the Miramichi River since 1996. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans put a stop to commercial fishery on the river after the bass population declined to only 5,000. But in the past 10 years, the bass population has boomed, tripling from 2016 to 2017 to reach almost a million. Eel Ground Chief George Ginnish said the First Nation has been fighting for a commercial fishery deal for years, finally signing an agreement in June to fish 25,000 striped bass this fall. "It's probably been 10 years that we've been banging on that door," Ginnish said. He said it's too soon to say how much revenue the deal will bring to the First Nation or how much the fishermen will actually be able to sell. However, the fishery will likely be a relatively small operation, with one vessel and four or five fishermen. Ginnish said it's a small step, but the First Nation would rather "dip its foot in the water" before diving headfirst, not knowing what the yield is or what impact it will have on the river ecosystem. [...] On the recreational side Jeff Wilson, co-host of the Miramichi Striper Cup, an annual catch-and-release bass fishing tournament on the river, said the decision to allow a commercial fishery makes him a "very concerned citizen with regards to striped bass recreational fishery." Wilson said the greater numbers of bass in recent years have been "very good" for the tourism and recreational fishing industry in the area, increasing the chances amateur anglers will snag a bass on their first try. "Making major moves like this, by taking and starting [...]
If you missed Dr. Larry McKinney's important testimony on January 30th to the House of Commons Standing Committee on The Oceans Act’s Marine Protected Areas, we encourage you to take a few minutes to listen to it below. Dr. McKinney is the Executive Director of the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies following 23 years with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department where he served as director of Coastal Fisheries and senior director of Aquatic Resources. He is well respected as a marine scientist, fishery manager and conservationist in North America and beyond. Here his thoughts on the Oceans Act. Special thanks to the CSIA Government Affairs Chair, Phil Morlock, and Shimano for facilitating Dr. McKinney's appearance before the Standing Committee.
Cue the Christmas music... It's time to start shopping for the anglers in your life... or passing hints to friends and family about what you want tucked beneath the tree. The Keep Canada Fishing Gift Guide is back! This year we've compiled a list of a few of our manufacturing members' most sought-after items. And at various price-points, there are gifts for every budget! Ugly Stik® GX2™ Treavel Spinning Combo Ugly Stik® GX2™ pack spinning combos provide the ultimate combination of durability and convenience. Enjoy fishing anywhere you go with this portable combo. Comes with a cloth rod and reel travel bag with adjustable straps. Retails at $74.99CAD. More details at uglystik.com. Follow Ugly Stik Lucky Strike Secret Weapon Considered a secret weapon among the Lucky Strike family, this colour pattern has been used for years but only made in small batches and never sold to stores until now. Available at luckystrikebaitworks.com. #luckystrikebaitworks Shimano Sedona Spinning Reel Packed with a number of premiere technologies that are normally reserved for Shimano’s top-tier offerings, the Shimano Sedona FI Spinning Reels provide advanced performance at an angler-friendly price point. Brought to life by Shimano’s flagship HAGANE gearing, the Shimano Sedona FI Spinning Reels provide long-lasting smoothness. Available at fish.shimano.com. Follow Shimano Quantum Drive Spinning Reel A precisely aligned uni-body construction spinning reel has silky smooth retrieve, superior freeness and ultra durability with 9 ball bearings. Available at Quantumfishing.com. Follow Quantum MarCum Lithium Shuttle Add the long-life power of Lithium ION to your MarCum® sonar units. Compact, lightweight and long-lasting, the Lithium Shuttle, powered by a 12-volt 12-amp hour Lithium ION polymer battery, can extend your unit’s continuous run time up to 40 hours. Designed for MarCum® M-Series, LX-Series, [...]
Originally published by Pye Acres, September 15, 2017 by Robert J. Pye The White Otter Inn was in my rear view mirror and the rising sun was on my windshield. I was up unreasonably early to drive home from a late-November OFAH membership meeting in northwestern Ontario. Slowly, the break of dawn unveiled the full view of an empty Trans-Canada Highway… empty except for the OFAH company Jeep I was driving and a half-ton truck up ahead. That truck was also flying my organization’s emblem. When some people didn’t care about cold water streams and its value to fish and wildlife, it was trout fisherman who volunteered to plant trees, prevent erosion, built spawning beds and fish ladders. Back bumper or top windshield corner, I can spot an OFAH membership decal a mile away. Our bright blue membership sticker is the highly recognizable “I’m proud to fish and hunt” statement affixed to boats, ATV’s, trucks and cars all throughout Ontario, especially in the north. With a full travel mug of coffee and an extra hour on my side, I had no inclination to pass my fellow OFAH members. After all, a weekend full of fish hatchery tours, club meetings and conservation topics couldn’t replace this anonymous OFAH membership success story being told, from the shoulders up, with backs against a truck cab window. With every mile I paid closer attention to the OFAH members sitting side-by-side in the cab of that truck. Their blaze orange hats and jackets made it easy to tell how they were spending the morning. A father and his son, I predicted. Going deer hunting, I assumed. I recognized their body language from my own childhood hunting trips, sitting beside my Dad on the bench [...]
Fishing is a heritage activity in Canada, and there are many reasons we think it's an important -- and fun! -- pastime. But have you ever wondered about the economic benefits of fishing? We produced this video a few years ago when we were launching Keep Canada Fishing, but the information is still valuable today. Take a look and learn more about why it's so important to "Keep Canada Fishing!"
Originally published by Ontario Out of Doors, August 4, 2017 by Alyssa Lloyd With the popularity of kayak fishing in Ontario, it hasn’t taken anglers long to start using standup paddleboards (SUPs) too. Their advantages are crystal clear: they are simple, portable, low cost, low maintenance, customizable, stealthy on the water, and just plain fun. They come in a variety of materials so anglers can choose from expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam core, wood, or a portable and an easily stored inflatable. SUPs are the perfect craft for a quick fish or a full day excursion. Here are some SUP tips to help you get paddling. Getting comfortable Pablo Bonilla of SUPnorth in Haliburton uses SUPs as simple fishing vessels targeting both fresh and saltwater species. As an instructor, Bonilla recommends first and foremost you become accustomed to paddling a SUP before you attempt fishing from one. “Gaining confidence is the first step, the more comfortable you are on your board, the more enjoyable fishing will be.” says Bonilla. TO FIND MORE TIPS ON SUP FISHING, VISIT OODMAG.COM
Wildfires have been ravaging large parts of British Columbia for several weeks now. An evolving list of fires in the region can be found on the B.C. Government website. A quick glance shows just how widespread and disastrous the situation is. It will take years for communities and wildlife to recover. While the immediate destruction mostly effects ecosystems on land, we thought it would be a good idea to look into if (and how) this destruction could have short and long-term impacts on aquatic wildlife and the ecosystems they're a part of. Do wildfires negatively impact fish? And if so, how? Sediment and Temperature Changes Wildfires are not new phenomena. While many are the result of human error, approximately 60% of B.C.'s fires are the result of lighting. Like lightning, there are many other "pulse disturbances" which impact wildlife. These can be things like droughts, floods, and erosion. The issue with wildfires is that their intensity can instigate and inflate these pulse disturbances. As trees burn and fall, increased sediment erodes into nearby bodies of water. This new waste material fills in spaces where fish would lay eggs and can, in some cases, damage their gills. Migration routes can also be blocked or altered. The immediate response is a reduction in fish populations. Another significant issue is temperature change. Fish which have fairly precise habitat requirements, like trout, are most at risk. When plants which shade cold-water streams are destroyed, the overall water temperature rises. Even just a few degrees can have an impact on metabolic and reproductive rates of the fish living there. Toxicity and Pollution An issue we found less information on is the effect of pollutants and toxins directly related to wildfires. One [...]
To celebrate National Fishing Week we are giving away 20 rods and reels! To enter, send us a photo of one of your Canadian catches. You can send them to us on Facebook, Twitter, or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Let's see those great Canadian catches!
Article courtesy of the Canadian Safe Boating Council July 1st-9th, 2017 marks National Fishing Week in Canada. On designated days within this period, thousands of Canadians will take advantage of their ability to legally fish without a license. While this opportunity has been a catalyst for many of us to catch the fishing bug, angling has been part of our Canadian heritage for countless generations. So popular has this activity become that well over 50% of the boats sold in Canada are used at least in part for fishing. By far, the most popular boats for this activity are small open powerboats under 6 meters in length. Coincidentally, between 2009 & 2013, boats of this type were involved in 26% of the boating-related fatalities according to the Lifesaving Society’s 2016 Drowning Report. Contrary to popular opinion, simply having a lifejacket aboard the boat alone isn’t necessarily going to be enough to prevent a catastrophic outcome. In approximately 80% of boating-related fatalities, victims weren’t wearing their lifejackets. Often times, a wave or wake from another boat can not only knock a boater into the water but also carry their boat away leaving them in the middle of a lake without any floatation and they drown. In this day and age, there really isn’t any excuse not to wear a lifejacket. Manufacturers have designed purpose-built units that not only provide comfort and allow ease of casting but also have pockets and clips to keep tackle, tools and other necessities at arm’s reach. They’re even available in a camouflage pattern! Inflatable lifejackets, too, provide a great option for anglers. They are cool, comfortable, allow for full arm motion and are completely adjustable. They can be deployed either manually [...]