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8 Million Anglers Left in the Dark: Why Don’t We Get a Say in Fishing Closures?

Why are US environmental groups invited to the table while Canadian stakeholders are not? Canada boasts 8 million anglers. These 8 million anglers generate an annual economy of $9 billion in support of their passion. Recreational fishing supports jobs in tourism, transportation, retail goods, boating, vehicle sales, ATV’s and snowmobiles. The taxes generated on multiple levels as a result of people fishing are substantial. Even so, the federal government has not always viewed sustainable recreational fishing as an important part of the Canadian economy. The Canadian Sportfishing Industry Association (CSIA) is the only national recreational fishing industry organization in Canada. Representing retailers, manufacturers and sales agencies, the CSIA works closely with sister trade organization, The American Sportfishing Association, on issues of mutual interest. Many of the U.S. Environmental Non-Government Organizations (ENGOs) and benefactors which threaten the future of fishing access in Canada are engaged in identical campaigns back home. The contrast, however, is in transparency. Even after asking to be included in discussions concerning major policy or legislative initiatives which directly impact fishing, CSIA is never invited to the table. U.S. ENGOs, on the other hand, are welcomed as "stakeholders" by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) and Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC). Before an accountable, transparent and fairly balanced stakeholder policy process can be established at DFO and ECCC, there must be full disclosure by these agencies of the existing funding, partners, maps and plans involved in ongoing policies and plans concerning MPAs. Go to Article 1: Funds from U.S. ENGOs Threaten Your Right to Fish Go to Article 2: The North American Model of Conservation Go to Article 3: Protection Zones: One Size Does Not Fit All Go to Article 4: Canadians’ Access to Fishing [...]

Protection Zones: One Size Does Not Fit All

Where fisheries closures arise, supporting scientific data is curiously absent. Last week we outlined the seven components of the North American Conservation Model. Included in that list are three crucial guidelines: that regulations be based on sound science, that the public have sustainable access to public lands, and that public resources be effectively and sustainably managed. When used as intended, Protection Zones (e.g. MPAs) are one tool among many which professionals can use to manage aquatic resources. They can span a variety of habitats and they can vary in purpose and level of protection. At their core, they are established to protect threatened fish stocks and sensitive habitat within specified boundaries, and can be removed once their goals have been accomplished. WHAT ARE MPAs? Where MPAs are suggested, site specific scientific data is required to first determine what problems exist, before fishery managers can decide what solution fits best. However, U.S. Environmental Non-Government Organizations (ENGOs) have hijacked the intended use to suit an entirely different anti-sustainable use agenda. While these efforts are championed under the guise of ‘protecting habitat,’ documented threats and supporting scientific data is often absent. In many instances Anglers are being falsely portrayed as a threat to habitat, fishery conservation and to healthy fish populations. Instead of science, arbitrary percentages and a ‘one size fits all’ approach for vast networks of ‘Protection Zones’ are now being mandated for Canadian waters. Sadly, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), and Prime Minister Trudeau have followed along with these organizations. As we mentioned in our previous article, ENGOs do not pay taxes, and they petition the government for funds to support their cause. In many ways, responsible anglers [...]

What is an MPA?

With information from the Government of Canada. MPAs (Marine Protected Areas) are protected areas of seas, oceans, estuaries or large lakes that are legally protected and managed to achieve the long-term conservation of nature. MPAs may allow some current and future activities depending on their impacts to the ecological features being protected. Contribute to a healthy marine environment: MPAs and MPA networks help conserve and protect marine species and populations, the diversity of ecosystems that marine organisms depend on, and special places. MPA networks also help to protect important ecological links between one area and another, contributing to improved species resilience and adaptation to future pressures. Support economic goals of society: Resilient and healthy ecosystems help to support sustainable industries, local economies and coastal communities. In time, protected areas can be a source of young fish to disperse to other areas, and a source of larger and more abundant fish for unprotected areas near MPAs. A MPA network strategy clarifies our direction for marine conservation, so ocean users will have a clearer vision of their potential access and restrictions to marine resources. Contribute to Canadian culture: MPAs can be developed to conserve and protect marine areas with spiritual or cultural heritage value such as archaeological sites, shipwrecks, and areas traditionally used by Aboriginal and non-aboriginal communities. Recreation, tourism and education activities that are consistent with the objectives of a protected area may be permitted, improving public awareness, understanding and appreciation of Canada’s marine heritage.

November 13th, 2018|Categories: Elevating Recreational Fishing, Issues, News|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Vancouver Island towns fearful over fishing closures

Originally published by Vancouver Sun, July 8, 2018 VICTORIA — An invitation from Fisheries and Oceans Canada to discuss ocean areas that might be critical for killer whales has outraged community leaders from southwest Vancouver Island. Prompted by Mike Hicks, Capital Regional District director for the Juan de Fuca Electoral Area, community politicians, ocean anglers and chambers of commerce from Sooke to Tofino are objecting to the possibility of closing two ocean zones to sport fishing: Swiftsure and La Perouse banks. Such a closure, they say, would devastate the small towns that rely on sport fishing to attract tourists. “Their (Fisheries and Oceans Canada) track record is they will consult and they close,” said Hicks. “And when it’s closed, it’s closed forever.” But the uproar has startled officials with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, who say they just want to start talking about the areas recently identified by scientists as important feeding areas for southern resident killer whales. “All we are doing is providing a kind of advanced ‘heads up,’ ” said Neil Davis, director of resource management. “There are no additional measures like closure that are being proposed at this time.” TO VIEW THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE ABOUT POSSIBLE FISHING CLOSURES, VISIT vancouversun.com. Would you like your fishing-related news featured on keepcanadafishing.com? Email us at info@catchfishing.com. Keep Canada Fishing is the national voice of Canada’s anglers, and we lead the effort to preserve your right to sustainably fish on our lakes, oceans, rivers and streams. By informing anglers of current and potential issues and threats affecting recreational fishing and access to public waters, our goal is to motivate anglers to take action on matters of importance to the future of fishing and conservation. We’re [...]

DFO Sets One Fish Retention Limit For Start Of Salmon Season

Originally published by VCOM Local News Now, May 7th, 2018 New for Salmon anglers in Newfoundland and Labrador this spring: a one fish retention limit. The season will begin in Newfoundland on June 1, and runs to September 7. The season in Labrador begins June 15, and runs to September 15. DFO has announced a one-fish retention plan on all rivers in Newfoundland and Labrador that currently allow retention. Those taking part will need one tag for that catch. An in-season review will be done on the number of returns, and the results will allow DFO to make a determination for the remainder of the season. There will also be a catch and release option for up to three fish per day for all rivers in the province. DFO says the 2018-2019 Angler’s Guide will soon be available online at http://www.nfl.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/NL/AG/anglersguide. Would you like your fishing-related news featured on keepcanadafishing.com? Email us at info@catchfishing.com. Keep Canada Fishing is the national voice of Canada’s anglers, and we lead the effort to preserve your right to sustainably fish on our lakes, oceans, rivers and streams. By informing anglers of current and potential issues and threats affecting recreational fishing and access to public waters, our goal is to motivate anglers to take action on matters of importance to the future of fishing and conservation. We’re also your voice on Parliament Hill. If you would like to contribute to our efforts to “Keep Canada Fishing,” you can donate now via PayPal. http://vocm.com/news/dfo-sets-one-fish-retention-limit-for-start-of-salmon-season/

Hamilton Harbour turning into sport fishing haven with return of walleye

Originally published by The Toronto Star, February 14th, 2018 By MARK MCNEIL Hamilton Spectator Ben Gottfried used to have to drive for hours to find a good place to ice fish for walleye. But this winter his favourite angling spot is only 15 minutes from his home — Hamilton Harbour. Yes, that’s right. The body of water known across the country for pollution and excesses of carp is now gaining a reputation as a sport fishing haven with feisty, mature walleye because of tiny fingerling stocking efforts over the past several years. “We now have a size of walleye that rivals any sport fishery in Ontario,” says Gottfried, 31, who works for a development consulting firm. In early January, Gottfried landed his biggest walleye, weighing eight pound and reaching 28 inches long. In all, he figures he’s caught close to a dozen, varying from 15 inches upward this ice fishing season. TO VIEW THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE, VISIT thestar.com Would you like your fishing-related news featured on keepcanadafishing.com? Email us at info@catchfishing.com. Keep Canada Fishing is the national voice of Canada’s anglers, and we lead the effort to preserve your right to sustainably fish on our lakes, oceans, rivers and streams. By informing anglers of current and potential issues and threats affecting recreational fishing and access to public waters, our goal is to motivate anglers to take action on matters of importance to the future of fishing and conservation. We’re also your voice on Parliament Hill. If you would like to contribute to our efforts to “Keep Canada Fishing,” you can donate now via PayPal.

Government of Canada invests $20 million to Asian carp prevention in the Great Lakes

NEWS PROVIDED BY: Fisheries and Oceans Central & Arctic Region Jan 23, 2018 BURLINGTON, ON, Jan. 23, 2018 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada is committed to preserving our freshwater resources and protecting the Great Lakes from the threat of invasive species. On behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Karina Gould, Minister for Democratic Institutions and Member of Parliament for Burlington, announced today a significant investment to protect the Canadian Great Lakes from Asian carps. The Government is investing up to $20 million over five years, and ongoing, to Canada's Asian Carp Program to continue prevention efforts through early warning surveillance, partnering and outreach activities. This funding will allow Fisheries and Oceans Canada to expand the Asian Carp Program to increase protection of our Great Lakes and preserve our fisheries. "I am pleased that Burlington is home to a state-of-the-art laboratory which has bolstered our efforts to fight the entry of Asian carps into the Great Lakes through research and innovation. The Government of Canada remains committed to ensuring that we take all possible measures to protect our treasured Great Lakes." - The Honourable Karina Gould, Minister for Democratic Institutions and Member of Parliament for Burlington Asian carps are among the top aquatic invasive species being monitored for their potential establishment in the Great Lakes. Already established in the Mississippi River basin in the United States, the four species of Asian carps (Bighead, Silver, Grass and Black) aggressively compete with native fishes for food and habitat, and have quickly become the dominant species. Risk assessments conducted by Canada and the U.S. show that the Great Lakes contains enough food and adequate habitat for Bighead, Silver and Grass carps to support an invasion and establishment. The Government will continue to work closely [...]