Call to Action – Help Save BC’s Public Fishery

Discussion in 'Saltwater Fishing Forum' started by Admin, Mar 9, 2019.

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  1. SerengetiGuide

    SerengetiGuide Well-Known Member

    Dropped off a hand written letter (thought it would be a lot more effective than typed) to Minister Wilkinson's office tonight. Hope it goes a long ways.

    IGotFishues, searun, dmurph and 6 others like this.
  2. dmurph

    dmurph Well-Known Member

    Nice, gonna do the same and send Facebook message also
  3. SSwilson92

    SSwilson92 Active Member

    Letter sent
  4. Just fishing

    Just fishing New Member

    I have sent letters again to Wilkinson , got my wife ,who doesn't want me hanging around the house all summer to write one too. I also posted on face book again to call everyone to get involved and save our recreational fisheries!
  5. chris73

    chris73 Well-Known Member

    I sent a handful of email letters over the last few weeks. Also signed the petition by SVIAC which apparently had lots of names on it. Fingers crossed for some rare common sense in politics. Not holding my breath though when I look at Britain right now.
  6. Salt Caddy

    Salt Caddy New Member

    Sent 2nd letter.
  7. cohochinook

    cohochinook Well-Known Member

    Here's an update on the situation sent out by the Sport Fishing Institute yesterday:

    March 12, 2019


    As has become evident over the last several years, there are specific stocks of Fraser River Chinook that are in a serious state of conservation concern and require attention. It is hoped that DFO will take swift action to improve Fraser River stream type salmonid production through opportunities such as strategic and careful enhancement, predator control and habitat rehabilitation.

    Scenario B - Retaining Opportunity
    On February 5th DFO distributed a discussion document that outlined the Fraser River Chinook issue and presented two example scenarios for consideration. Scenario B would reduce the CYER (CYER; all mortalities, across all fisheries divided by the total estimated size of the run) of the stocks of concern to 10%, a number that DFO declared as acceptable in the discussion document. Scenario B involves the use of bag limit reductions (to 1 per day, 2 in possession) in Johnstone Strait and Northern Strait of Georgia from April 1 to the end of August. It is also incorporates a mark selective fishery and bag limit reduction of one hatchery marked fish per day from April 1st to July 31st, with the option to retain one chinook per day marked or unmarked from the month of August for the migration corridor from the western entrance of Juan De Fuca Strait to the Fraser River mouth. The detailed description of the scenario recommended by the SFAB is here.

    In contrast, Scenario A details a 5% CYER option which would require non-retention of Chinook for the public fishery from April 1st to July 31st. This Scenario would effectively destroy the reputation, opportunity and prospects of the public fishery while reducing the exploitation rate of Chinook by the public fishery by only .8 % over Scenario B. While there are significant concerns about some runs of Fraser River Chinook and it is important that all sectors adjust catch impacts, implementation of Scenario A is neither a biologically necessary or a socially responsible approach. Public fishery impacts on these stocks are extremely low already, and the additional conservation benefit to stocks that would be achieved from implementing non-retention in the public fishery versus a mark selective fishery, MSF, combined with bag limit reductions amounts to less than a 1% difference, yet the social and economic impacts would be devastating.

    While neither approach is desirable for the public fishery, given the state of conservation concern, the SFAB has suggested that Scenario B represents an approach that almost eliminates the impacts on stocks of concern in the public fishery. Scenario B continues to fulfill the legal requirement for the public fishery to “bear the brunt” of conservation measures which must take place before DFO can choose to impose restrictions on First Nations FSC fisheries. It is in the FSC fisheries where the bulk of the harvest of these stocks would take place if scenario B were to be implemented.

    It is worth repeating, the difference in public fishery CYER between Scenario B and Scenario A is a reduction of only 0.8%! When considering the benefit of harvest measures to the stocks of concern versus social and economic cost (this is a relationship that is important for DFO to include in development of management decisions), it is inconceivable how DFO could contemplate the short- and long-term socio-economic impacts to small coastal communities that would result should Scenario A be implemented.

    It is important that the public fishery is participant in a sustainable approach and addresses conservation concerns in a meaningful way. Scenario B is a far cry from providing the opportunity and expectation that would allow the public fishery to thrive and represents “survival mode” for our fishery. It is a plan that we hope can be considered only in the short term and would be paired with much more effective actions to help the stocks of concern recover.

    Making the point - Letters to the Minister
    To that end, decisions have not been made by the department or the Minister at this time. Some have sent letters to the department to describe the importance of opportunity personally and to the public fishery. Timing is good and it is important to send letters to the Minister now to make the same point and before decisions are made. Letters should express the values and importance of opportunity personally and to small communities coast wide and that decisions must be considered against the benefits of any management measures adopted. It is important that steps are taken to address conservation concerns but when DFO’s evidence shows that one scenario will retain opportunity for the angling community and the other will eliminate it, the imbalance must be highlighted; by all measures, the socio-economic costs are far greater than the benefit to the resource. Minister Wilkinson can be reached at:

    Looking Ahead - Fish for the Future
    The use of mark selective fisheries, MSF, to focus harvest on fin clipped hatchery produced fish thereby moving harvest away from unmarked stocks of concerns will be an effective conservation tool for DFO to use. But it does significantly restrict opportunity in areas with low mark rates. To address this, and significantly increase the availability of marked hatchery salmon in many areas of BC without producing even a single additional hatchery fish, we believe that the implementation of mass marking of all hatchery produced chinook and coho salmon in BC is long overdue and should be an immediate priority for DFO. For many hatcheries the mark rate is at or even below 10% on chinook, while our neighbours to the south mark 100%. This is simply unacceptable in the era of conservation of wild salmon, and regulations that severely restrict opportunity on unmarked fish.

    As we began, in order to see some real light and hope for recovery of Fraser River Chinook, Coho and Steelhead, we need significant and immediate investment in the production of these fish. Rather than focussing on the end of the life cycle and harvest of salmon, urgent attention and funding is required to dedicate to strategic enhancement techniques, predator control and habitat restoration. In this era of nine figure investment in research, its high time DFO and the Province of BC invested in the future of fisheries that support communities. We further urge DFO to use the best available knowledge and technology to give struggling runs a jump start to recovery and to provide long term improvements in survival from juveniles to returning adults. Without this investment and immediate attention, the future of these fish and the animals and communities that depend on them will remain uncertain. It is time for DFO to start investing in things that will provide hope for both the recovery of the fish and the future for fisheries.
    Saltwater Cowboy likes this.
  8. calmsea

    calmsea Well-Known Member

    Letter to Fisheries Minister and MP sent. I don't participate in the social media world though.
  9. pescador

    pescador Well-Known Member

    Two letters sent today.
    Derby likes this.
  10. cohochinook

    cohochinook Well-Known Member

    Cowboy Ron, el.Pereh, BCRingo and 5 others like this.
  11. dmurph

    dmurph Well-Known Member

    Nice article Dave, somehow we need to get the word out to the general public the real story. All the well funded enviro groups have painted a very different story to the masses, a story in which anyone would support if theydidn’t know any better. It should almost be illegal for these groups to sell people false hopes of saving whales and Fraser chinooks.
    cohochinook likes this.
  12. blindmonkey

    blindmonkey Active Member

    I read your letter in the Chief when it was delivered here today. In a word excellent!
    cohochinook likes this.
  13. FishDoc

    FishDoc Well-Known Member

    Well... saw this a little late, but sent in an email anyways. So when do we hear the outcome?
  14. el.Pereh

    el.Pereh Well-Known Member

    dmurph and cohochinook like this.
  15. cohochinook

    cohochinook Well-Known Member

    It might be a little long for them, but I'll try submitting. Thanks!
    dmurph likes this.
  16. ziggy

    ziggy Well-Known Member

    I see where 142 million has been committed over 5 years to restore salmon stock. Hopefully it will be spent on actual measurable enhancements. Sadly I think a lot of it will be pissed away with no meaningful accomplishments, other than a lot of happy organizations receiving money for their “administration costs”.
    littlechucky likes this.
  17. littlechucky

    littlechucky Well-Known Member

    Government spending is like a bad charity. Most of the money is wasted in administration before it gets to the real cause.
  18. Jencourt

    Jencourt Well-Known Member

    Do we have a realistic expectation as to when they will announce regulations for 2019-20? Specifically Chinook?

    Will it be before April 1 ? Or will we enter new license year status quo and then get adjusted after IFMP is completed?
  19. wildmanyeah

    wildmanyeah Crew Member

    The only thing I have read is early April.
  20. scott craven

    scott craven Well-Known Member

    It would be in everyone's best interest if the new regs were established in advance of the
    the April 01/2019 licences.
    people should know before they buy a licence if they are able to retain Chinook.
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