Letters to Fisheries Minister Jordan annoucement of Fraser River 2020 Chinook Management Measures!

Discussion in 'Conservation, Fishery Politics and Management.' started by cohochinook, Jun 26, 2020.

  1. cohochinook

    cohochinook Well-Known Member

    Everyone on this Forum needs to write a Letter of Opposition to Fisheries Minister Jordan Fraser River 2020 Chinook Management Measures! I can tell you these letters are causing real rattling of the chains in DFO and causing concerns. If you have sent one yet please do so to the following emails and copy your MP. Tell them enough is enough and you aren’t going to take this sitting down and tell them how you are going to vote.

    DFO’s Pacific Salmon Team: DFO.PacificSalmonRMT-EGRSaumonduPacifique.MPO@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
    Bernadette Jordan, Fisheries Minister min@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
    Rebecca Reid, DFO Regional Director General rebecca.reid@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
    Andrew Thomson, DFO Regional Director andrew.thomson@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
    Terri Bonnet, DFO Area Director, Fraser & Interior terri.bonnet@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
    Dean Allan, Resource Management Program Co-ordinator dean.allan@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
    Jeff Grout, DFO Regional Resource Managerjeff.grout@dfo-mpo.gc.ca

    Below is my letter:

    Dear Minister Jordan,

    I am writing to express my extreme disappointment and lack of trust in the consultation process that you conducted with the public and the Sport Fish Advisory Board on your recent decision regarding Fraser River Chinook Management Measures. At no time during the consultation process was the extreme closures that were put in place by your department ever proposed or discussed. You now have closed access to any Chinook salmon fishing for even catch and release in all of Vancouver area and the majority of Howe Sound from April 1 to September 1, with no consultation on this with the public! This is disgraceful and totally unacceptable! Both, the lack of consideration and unjustified policies DFO continues to impose on the public sector are destroying an important social and economic component of Canadian society.

    The Sport Fish Advisory Board worked very hard since last year when Fraser River Chinook Management measures were put in place to make recommendations to DFO on recovery measures for the 4.2 and 5.2 Spring Chinook and 5.2 Summer Chinook stocks of concern. We asked for a recovery program that involved real actions such as addressing water extraction, habitat degradation, pinniped predation, hatchery enhancement, enforcement of illegal in river gillnets and selective fishing such as fish traps. I also personally with Minister Wilkinson in May of 2019 to put forward these recommendations, even going so far as to put forward a written proposal by the Spruce City Wildlife Federation to aid in recovery that never received a response from the Minister!

    So far, all you have announced is a smoke mirrors plan of massive closures without consultation that has proven to fail based on past management! Fishing restrictions have failed to save other salmon species such as early Stuart Sockeye, Thompson Coho and Steelhead. During extensive meetings with DFO staff, the Sport Fish Advisory Board presented opportunities for mark selective fisheries for Chinook salmon in areas of the South Coast that had a less than 1% encounter rate with the Chinook stocks of concern. This would have created retention opportunities for the many healthy Chinook salmon stocks that are in the South Coast waters. It would have protected critical socio and economic opportunities for all Canadians. Now you have decided that 1% still was not acceptable and closed. I ask you and your department if a proposal that was built on DFO’s own science and data is not acceptable at 1% encounter rate, then what is? You have put in place a political driven two-tier management system without on consultation or scientific basis to only pander to the MCC and Fraser River First Nations opposition to the Public Fishery. This unacceptable politically driven decision will not be taken lightly by the Public Fishery and you will be held accountable for your management measures and complete failure to use science and data.

    I can tell you that from 20 years of fishing the South Coast and specifically the Howe Sound and Vancouver area for Chinook salmon, that I have never seen some many Chinook salmon in our local waters. There are abundant numbers of Chinook from the Chilliwack/Vedder River, Puget Sound, Summer 4-1 Chinook and Eastcoast of Vancouver Island rivers such as the Cowichan and Puntledge, along with significant improvements in Squamish Chinook as a result of hatchery enhancement and improved habitat work done by your own department. This year I started doing Chinook sampling for the DFO AVID ANGLER program. During days this spring in a 6 hour period of sampling Chinook in Howe Sound and lower Georgia Straight, I have caught and released 27 Chinook between 55 cm and 81 cm in one outing. Several times this year I have sampled 12 to 15 Chinook in 3 or 4 hours of fishing. The abundance of Chinook in local waters is incredible yet DFO chooses to ignore this and bring in totally not science and data-based management measures!

    Minister, I urge you to immediately reconsider your decision and restore access to the public fishery to the abundant Chinook salmon that can be caught by sport fishers in a very sustainable manner and take real recovery measures for Chinook stocks of concern!


    Dave Brown

    Squamish to Lillooet Sport Fish Advisory Board Vice-Chair

    DFO National Recreational Fisheries Award Recipient 2017
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
    Peahead likes this.
  2. the butcher

    the butcher Well-Known Member

    With all due respect Dave, how do you know the letters are "rattling" the chain? If letters do indeed have an impact it would mean DFO cares what we think and takes us seriously. Based on their actions over the past few years neither is the case. If these letters are having an impact now, why did they not have an impact while DFO was in the midst of their decision making process?

    By no means am I trying to kill your thunder, but if letters haven't worked and have gotten us no where, should we not direct our attention and energies on alternative strategies?

    I think a demonstation and protest would have a greater impact in getting their attention. I know you are in the midst of putting a demonstration and protest together and I've already indicated that I am in, even if it means taking time off from work etc... I am going to invite out everyone I know who is willing to support me and to support us. I am willing to help document and video tape river gillnetting.

    I personally believe we need to move on from the writing letters approach unless there is evidence that it does work or is having an impact. Based on DFO ignoring us time and time again the evidence of letters having an impact is not there.

    I think it's about time we stop playing nice.
    sir-vivor likes this.
  3. wildmanyeah

    wildmanyeah Crew Member

    I don't think dave can reveal that on the internet But he's telling the truth.

    DFO got some some really heated letters from Sports Fishermen that has got them very concerned.

    I'm not sure what they expected tho, this is what happens when they ignore science and play politics. People can see right through the BS they try to feed.
    Tinny, Peahead and cohochinook like this.
  4. Onchy

    Onchy Active Member

    Personal opinion -

    We can argue the effectiveness of letters til we are blue in the face. Some are for it, some are over it.

    What we know is not effective is doing nothing.

    Dave laid out a blueprint above and I think we can all give 15 mins to send something off, while other actions are being considered.

    Personally I’m not sure a demonstration is best route, would have to be very tactfully presented. Anything our opposition can spin into “privileged white guy with 100,000$ dollar boat pissed he can’t kill endangered chinook” ( as wildly inaccurate as that statement is, but read today’s political climate) will only serve to hurt us. I think an inclusive approach including upper Fraser FN, commercial and Salt/fresh rec interests will be most effective in putting pressure on addressing the lower river practices, predation issues etc.
    I’m sure this has been discussed and attempted but just my thoughts.
    Peahead and barkerfam like this.
  5. Peahead

    Peahead Well-Known Member

    Thanks go to Dave for writing and sending of that letter. I will be writing one as well however mine will have most emphasis on the closure being a re-allocation of healthy stocks of Chinook to the lower Fraser FN during August. I will point out that hatchery Chinook during those earlier months of April-July should be accessible in many areas to public fishers for retention (because stock of concern are wild Chinook) . I will also continue to stress the need for mass marking of our Chinook and going fwd to have marked selective fishery during those times when we have a very tiny number of 'at risk' Chinook in our marine areas (less than 1% in Georgia Strait). DFO's August closure to the marine areas in 28/29 coincides with the timing when the early Fraser stock of concern has passed into the river so this is why I want to focus on that point.

    DFO's own notice suggests that 'at-risk' stock give way to the healthy stocks in August :

    Fishery Notice FN0569 variation order 2020-305 ( amendment to FN 0565)

    "Very limited Fraser River FSC fisheries will be permitted into July to reduce encounters of at-risk Fraser Chinook, with opportunities to target healthy Summer 4(1)
    Chinook in August."

    Due to constitutional first rights to salmon (after conservation) the FR FN can't be stopped or curtailed of their FSC fishery at all in river if the public fishery is open however the argument that the public fishery should still have access to hatchery fish at those times is an interesting one. Are hatchery raised, public tax paid Chinook not included in those same constitutional rights ? I am going to say that is likely a grey area but how would we know without a lawsuit? This is a legal question and unfortunately I am not a Lawyer. When FR FN FSC fishery is not curtailed on the river and is open for those 4-1"s as the DFO notice above suggests, why would the public fishery still be shut down? By DFO's own wording "healthy summer 4-1" Chinook stocks are in the river by August and the FSC is open, so how can we legally be closed in 28/29 when we are next in line for access after FN ? Again, I am not a lawyer but it seems we do need one for this question too. I personally believe the closure to the public fishery in August is not a legal closure ( meaning I think it can't be assumed that this August closure keeps within the FN constitutional rights to keep the public fishery from fishing for /or retaining Chinook)

    THIS CLOSURE HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH CONSERVATION OF CHINOOK . The fact DFO uses this as the premise of the closure is what makes the bad become unbearable. Yet again DFO is hiding the truth behind the closures. The "Political Bargaining with Chinook" message that has been out there since last year sums it up. Yes there are stocks of concern (4-2/5-2) which are early Fraser Chinook runs that need to be rebuilt to healthy numbers but DFO is not only doing nothing to rebuild the stock but using the closing of the public fishery as optic's for the general public to fool them in to thinking they are doing the right thing. This when it is actually done to appease lower Fraser River FN's demands and at the same time appease ENGO's that believe keeping us off the water will help feed SRKW ( ENGO's assume the SRKW health issues are due to an actual lack of Chinook rather than all the other reasons SRKW are struggling) The stocks of concern are the early Fraser Chinook which need everyone's help but as most of us know there are many healthy Chinook stocks in Georgia Strait and many are healthy un marked from hatcheries. As many have already said I too have never seen so many Chinook in our waters.

    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
  6. Peahead

    Peahead Well-Known Member

    cohochinook likes this.
  7. Brando

    Brando Active Member

    I have written my own letters to everyone listed in Jasons article including minister Jordan. she has a degree in political science and with the pipeline starting up my guess is they want to keep the protesting to a minimum... very unfortunate that someone who has no experience in this field whatsoever now has control of such a precious resource.

    I personally think the letters must have some impact, no matter how small should you choose to not send anything at all your admitting defeat. Doing nothing will get you nothing very true.

    If you have time to watch a tv show you have time to write a letter or donate, it only takes a few minutes.
    BCRingo, cohochinook and Peahead like this.
  8. cohochinook

    cohochinook Well-Known Member

    Well said!
  9. Tinny

    Tinny Well-Known Member

    Well I really hope this is true and that they are concerned. They are not our friends and need to be called out on this BS. I know I would not like to receive the letter I sent them. Polite but brutally honest. The fact that these closures never came up in discussions means we got stabbed in the back while all they were doing was paying us lip service. A liar thinks he’s smart until caught in a lie. They are now caught in a lie. Do not let up. Write. Call them. Make them miserable and uncomfortable . Do not let up.

    The time it takes you to question the effectiveness of letter writing in this forum could be used to write them a letter. If you feel that is not effective call them. Put them in the spot on the phone like the good old days.

    As mentioned above this is a political reallocation done for optics with zero conservation benefits for stocks of concern. Minister Jordan and the DFO are working hard to screw Canadian taxpayers who like to fish while at the same time sealing the fate of soon the be extinct stocks of concern.
    cohochinook likes this.
  10. mikeyman

    mikeyman Active Member

    Sent this last week. Keep the letters going! They are making a difference and it is just the beginning. It isn't about weather they make the full impact we are seeking...it is just the start of what needs to be a combined effort from everyone that gives a shit...

    Fraser River salmon and BC economy are doomed. Read if you even care about the issue or just ignore it like u are clearly doing.

    Sun 2020-06-21 5:58 PM

    The new announced measures for Fraser River Chinook fisheries this summer makes no sense. You are promoting hate and seperation amoung interest groups. The fish we cannot retain will only meet thier demise in nets in the Fraser. Healthy stocks and Hatchery clipped fish non retention makes no sense upto a size restriction thru August. Why? The August run is healthy. Those fish we release will only be taken up river by countless gill nets. Why pay taxes? Why pay for a licence? Why feed the economy and the industry? You are destroying the BC economy. The measures you are taking will not save the fish. Instead of saving your own political interests proper action needs to be taken. 1. Everyone fishes or nobody. Equal opportunity. You need to make things fair for each group to create allies in the cause. Work together over making your unilateral draconian descissions. Listen to each group. Do not ignore them. 2. The gill nets need to come out of the river. Subsidize if needed. It is destroying many endangered runs. Stop lying about it. Enforce it. 3. Cull the massive overpopulation of seals and sea lions. The science is there. Population has gone way up and they are eating mass amount of juvenile and adult salmon. Open the seal hunt. 4. Invest in the fisheries. Hatcheries and habitat restoration.
    It just pisses me off everything you are doing now won't fix anything. The decline will continue as the interest groups become more divided. Get them together. Listen to science. Take the action needed to make a difference over political interests and fear over your own personal political agenda. Take anyone of us on the west coast that understand something about what actually happens here and they would do a better job of saving the salmon. Address the black market salmon poaching and illigal sale. But nobody wants to acknowledge it. Like I said nothing will change the salmon will continue to decline. I know many will be calling for change on the west coast if something isn't done to find a solution before it is to late.
  11. OldBlackDog

    OldBlackDog Well-Known Member

  12. Ryan A

    Ryan A Active Member

    Just a heads up the Jeff Grout email is no longer active it seems, that’s the reply I got anyways.
  13. explorer321

    explorer321 New Member

    Ryan - You need to take off the word Manager from the front of the Jeff Grout address above.

    I finally got pissed off and sent them all a fair but long, brutally hard truth email too. So much for equitable harvest opportunities. What they have mandated will do absolutely nothing for salmon populations or health. If I was that biased in my job in the private sector, I would get fired immediately!
    cohochinook likes this.
  14. Ryan A

    Ryan A Active Member

    Thanks! I’ll give it another go
  15. brad00

    brad00 New Member

    Hello everyone, I don't normally post, but I have been an avid reader of this forum for some time. I hope this post will provide some help with spurring action within government. In my day job I interact and lobby governments frequently. I have been fishing on the coast for over 40 years and I hate to see the sports fishery in its current state. When I write my own letter I will be using the points below to guide me. I hope people reading this will find the suggestions helpful as well when writing or calling the Federal Government.

    1. Quote directly from the Ministers mandate letter found here: https://pm.gc.ca/en/mandate-letters...ceans-and-canadian-coast-guard-mandate-letter This is the direction given to the Minister by the Prime Minister- it specifically references scientific evidence based decisions

    2. Write in your own words, form letters get thrown out or ignored

    3. Call the relevant bureaucrats start with the ADM responsible for fisheries: Phone numbers are publicly available and can be found here: http://www.goc411.ca/Employees/IndexByUnit/c=CA,o=GC,ou=DFO-MPO,ou=DM-SM

    4. Make note that sports fisherman/ guides and lodge operators are responsible users of the public resources, their livelihoods depend on a maintaining a sustainable resource

    5. Propose a solution - specific modifications to regulations, long term solutions, etc. We have to give the bureaucrats a reasonable policy option that can be championed
    - Immediate solutions should have solid scientific reasoning behind them.
    - Longer term solutions could be ideas that have worked in other jurisdictions

    Lastly, the lower mainland is an important constituency for the Liberal Party, if any of you live in ridings of liberal MLA's it will be worth including them on the email string and asking for a meeting with them.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020 at 1:20 PM
  16. BCRingo

    BCRingo Well-Known Member

    Donated and sent the email as well.
    The last 3-4 years I’ve been sending letters to all of these mofos but I’v never heard a clear and direct answer to my questions. Last year, just before the election, I sent my useless liberal MP a letter and asked him for an explanation of why Wilkinson was blamin the public fishery for the diminishing Fraser stocks. He sent me a reply with a bunch of nonsense copy/paste that looked like it was from DFO’s internal bulletins. I walked in his office the next day and told him what I thought of his PM, “the honourable” minister and his response. We don’t play nice but we don’t want to break laws and act like idiots either.
    I encourage others to send in the letters and also plan for social disobedience. That is your legal entitlement as a citizen of a democracy.
    cohochinook likes this.
  17. brad00

    brad00 New Member

    Its good to be direct but polite. Focus on how bad the decisions are and why. If I were meeting with MP's or bureaucrats on this issue. I would stick to a few bullet point issues and put them in your own words

    - The decisions made by the Minister will not improve the plight of Fraser River Chinook
    insert science points from their own reports and data

    - The decisions are not based on science but on politics

    - Consultations have been disingenuous and degrade trust in DFO and the Government

    - Government keeps trying the same things which have proven not to work

    - Sports fisherman are responsible users of the resource and generate hundreds of millions of dollars in economic benefit, sports fisherman have a vested interest in the resource being sustainable

    - There is a solution
    Insert proposed solutions
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020 at 6:37 PM
  18. easydoesit

    easydoesit Member

    Proposed Solution:

    TRUDEXIT - Believe in it, work towards it, make it happen
  19. scott craven

    scott craven Well-Known Member

    Here's the latest DFO bulletin, was hoping for something more positive....

    Fishery Notice - Fisheries and Oceans Canada

    Subject: FN0620-General Information - Chinook - In Season Abundance Update - Fraser River Spring 5(2) and Summer 5(2) Chinook

    This notice is intended to provide an update on the in season abundance of Fraser River Spring 5(2) and Summer 5(2) Chinook.

    In 2020, the Albion Chinook test fishery began operating on April 21. The total catch in the 8 inch mesh test net for the period of this update (May 3 to June 13, or
    stat weeks 05/1 to 06/2) was two (2) Chinook, which is converted to a cumulative weekly catch-per-unit-effort (CPUE) of 0.04. Based on this input, the predicted
    terminal return for the Fraser River Spring 5(2) and Summer 5(2) Chinook aggregate ranges from 16,000 to 47,000 Chinook (median value of 27,680).

    The cumulative daily CPUE at Albion during the period of this update is well below the historical average of 28.6. With 2 Chinook caught the cumulative daily CPUE =
    0.23, and is the lowest on record for this time period. This is also the lowest run size estimate produced by the model since its inception in 2012. It is important to
    note that input values that are outside of the historical range of observations, like that observed for 2020, typically result in higher uncertainty in the run size
    estimate produced by the model. The low catch at the test fishery suggests very low abundance for the Spring 5(2) and Summer 5(2) Chinook Salmon returning in 2020, and
    indicates ongoing low productivity for these Management Units.

    The in season run size estimate is provided for information purposes only and is not being used for in season adjustments. The Department has announced precautionary
    management actions to substantially reduce fishery mortalities on these at-risk Chinook. Further information on these management measures can be found in FN0565.


    Contact your local DFO office
  20. wildmanyeah

    wildmanyeah Crew Member

    It’s dfo non sence they trying to get their message out before the protest.

    Last year they never gave an in season update and said they did not because they were no longer managing from the zone approach.

    I find it funny that they are giving one this year. I guess they want the bad news out their. While last year the river was low and the Albion did well so they kept that to them selves.

    The whonnack gill net has been doing well with chinook catch since it started.

    cohochinook likes this.

Share This Page