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‘I am superbly worried’: West Coast fishermen await decision on restrictions meant to protect orcas

Originally Published by CBC, Nov 25, 2018 By Maryse Zeidler  A year after the Department of Fisheries and Oceans closed off several West Coast sports fishing area to protect orcas, fishermen say they're worried more closures are on the way along southern Vancouver Island. In 2017, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans closed several areas in the Juan de Fuca Strait to commercial and sport fishing between June and October. The closure was part of the DFO's efforts to protect a dwindling population of about 74 southern resident killer whales that feed on chinook salmon, which inhabit those waters in that time period. Ryan Chamberland, president of the Sooke Region Tourism Association and owner of the Vancouver Island Lodge, says more closures would devastate the small fishing villages along the coast. "Closing us down — ruining towns, everyone losing equity in their assets and properties, is not going to solve an issue, it's going to create a crisis," Chamberland said. "No one wants to lose their houses and jobs and and their way of lifestyle and opportunities to be on the water." The concerns of sports fishermen come at a time when some marine mammal experts say the closures might not even help the endangered southern resident killer whale. In November, Ottawa announced it wants to establish new areas of critical habitat off the west coast of Vancouver Island for southern resident killer whales — the Swiftsure Bank in the Juan de Fuca Strait between Vancouver Island and Washington state, and La Perouse Bank off Tofino, B.C. The DFO says it has consulted on the the critical habitat areas and it's still planning what fishing restrictions, if any, may be applied next year. Ottawa says designating the area as a critical habitat would also enable it to restrict other activities like whale watching and marine traffic, which [...]

Recreational chinook salmon fishing restricted on most Yukon rivers

Originally published by CBC, July 26, 2018 There will not be a public chinook salmon fishery in the Yukon River watershed this year for almost the tenth year in a row. Harvey Jessup, the chair of the Yukon Salmon Sub-Committee, said the number of chinook expected to reach their spawning grounds in the territory won't be enough to support fishing. The sub-committee makes recommendations to the federal government and First Nations on the salmon fishery. Jessup said First Nations have also been asking members to reduce or stop their harvest altogether. He said 74,000 chinook that originated in Canada are estimated to have entered the Yukon River this year. That's far less than the runs of 150,000 to 175,000 salmon in the 1980s, said Jessup. He said an agreement with the United States requires the Americans to let between 42,000 and 55,000 Canadian salmon reach Yukon. "All of our salmon have to get here through Alaska, the Alaskan government has done their fair share in management," said Jessup. "But the reality is the fish are just not coming back." Jessup noted salmon spend the majority of their lives in the ocean. "There are kinds of issues we probably don't understand," he said. TO VIEW THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE ABOUT CHINOOK SALMON FISHING CLOSURES, VISIT cbc.ca. 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 [...]

August 1st, 2018|Categories: Issues, News, North|Tags: , , , |0 Comments