Tuesday 2 March 2021

Integrated Fisheries Management Plans - 2021 - And Chinook Retention Opportunities

Here you go for the southern area of BC, the DFO plan. Give comments to the SFAB and DFO:

Category(s): General Information, ABORIGINAL - General Information, COMMERCIAL - General Information, COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Gill Net, COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Seine, COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Troll, RECREATIONAL - General Information, RECREATIONAL - Salmon

Fishery Notice - Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Subject: FN0197-Salmon - Release of Draft 2021/22 Northern and Southern BC Salmon IFMPs for Consultation

The Department has released the 2021-22 draft Northern and Southern BC Salmon Integrated Fishery Management Plans (IFMPs) for comment.

Deadline for submission of comments is April 1st, 2021.

To obtain an electronic copy for review, please click the link below: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/fz3ggovqa1493jr/AABJMxIUb5ixiGvg2ESc53ala?dl=0

The draft IFMPs set out the policy framework that guides decision making, general objectives relating to management of stocks of concern, enhancement and enforcement, as well as decision guidelines for a range of fisheries.

Section 13 of the IFMPs outline the Species Specific Fishing Plans, which describe fisheries plans for each of the salmon species and the management units and major fishery areas for each species. This section includes the relevant information on management approach, decision guidelines and specific management measures, as well as, information related to First Nations, commercial and recreational fishing plans for each fishery.

During March and April, the Department will be meeting with First Nations and recreational, commercial and environmental groups to seek further feedback on the draft IFMPs as part of the IFMP consultation process.

Comments may be provided in writing via email to the DFO Pacific Salmon Management Team at: DFO.PacificSalmonRMT-EGRSaumonduPacifique.MPO@dfo-mpo.gc.ca.


DFO Pacific Salmon Management Team


Fisheries and Oceans Canada Operations Center - FN0197

Sent March 1, 2021 at 15:10

Visit us on the Web at http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca.
I should add that the Juan de Fuca retentions and lengths for chinook are located here, starting on page 10: https://mcusercontent.com/efe5de6efa001c46a0c5b48af/files/2e7f43c7-2536-49bb-ba99-359292046f5c/3._DFO_Chinook_Evaluation_Framework_Feb2021.pdf.

This file also lists many other retention ops in other areas of BC. This is the title of the document: DFO DRAFT CHINOOK EVALUATION FRAMEWORK February 2021

Sunday 20 September 2020


In Dec 2019, I went to Patagonia to fly fish the high plateau rivers. This part of Patagonia is an arid land much like the Kamloops region of BC. Near San Martin de Los Andes, the Lanin volcano dominates the landscape for a hundred kms. This shot is in the Colleccion Georg in San Martin. Lanin is right of centre.
Here is a shot of a cloud that appears to be eating Lanin. As Lanin is 14,000 feet high, how big do you think the cloud is, 50,000 feet? This is a shot of a lifetime, and tells one that to catch the uncatchable you must carry a camera 24 hours a day, which I do.
This superb shot of two girls painted in almost 3-D oil stands out in the gallery. Click on the image to see just how well the camera was able to catch the detail.
Among the many oil paintings is a series on fishing. Here is one.
And who would think to photograph a horse underwater? This is also in the Colleccion Georg. It took this member of the family three years of trying to catch this.
An afternoon shot of the Upper Malleo river with Lanin presiding over afternoon in the background.
Stalking Patagonia rainbows. In the spring pool 30 feet below this rock, swim rainbow trout that are vigilant, being able to spot a fisher dude who mistakenly stands up. Hence, the care taken to stay out of sight.

And a Strike!

And a nice rainbow held up proudly for the camera, by one of the very pleasant guides (name to come).

And with our other quarry, Mr. Brown Trout.

The Three Amigos, with Jim Miller in the middle, from California.

Map of the pools on the Upper Malleo.

Along the many miles of river that we floated, there were rock walls in ochre, as befits their volcanic origin. It crossed my mind that they seemed to be composed of faces and skulls, one on top of the other. Then I would tell myself not to let my imagination run wild in a wild world. But then we would come across another ochre wall and I would see more faces, crowds of them. I got used to being accompanied by my volcanic compadres. After keeping this to myself for several days, while telling myself I was indeed seeing things, I happened to ask my guide if he, too, saw faces in the rocks, assuming he would look at me strangely.

But then, he said, most casually and matter of factly, that the Indigenous peoples of the high steppe lands called the rocks 'the faces' and had been doing so for thousands of years. I felt relieved and more in touch with these people who, like I, at my core, am a person of 'water, land and animals.'

The high steppe in early evening and full moon. You will notice several rock walls in this wide expanse with glimpses of river. This is a shot at an estancia where we stayed in their lodges high above the river valleys. These are also cattle/sheep ranches in their thousands of acres, and, yes, their gauchos still rule the land. The river 'beats' were accessed by the trucks we bumped down gravel roads to find our daily fish. The guides have agreements with the estancia owners. In other words, we met not a soul in our two weeks of fishing.

Nicco of Fly Fishing Last Minute in a wide expanse of river and with his buddy, Mr. Rainbow. The days were typically sunshine and up to 80. For the first time in my life I was loaned - and wore - a 'buff' around my neck. Notice the calm mornings that give way to afternoon winds.

And a closeup of his buddy.

One morning the wind was so high I almost fell into the water a half dozen times. As the wind was slated to get higher in the afternoon, I took this one half day off and wandered the estancia's grounds alone, something I greatly appreciated. Being alone. Many miles of exploration.

A River Map of the Lower Chimchuin River river. Note: click on this or any other image to make it larger.

Horses stampeding among clouds. Photo from Colleccion Georg.

Lunch at the lodge. Note the beef, a regular mid-afternoon treat, before more fishing. Only my plate in the foreground is a chicken dish as I am allergic to beef.

Lunch on the river, very civilized. And more beef, wine and Grolsch.

And even more eating, of dinner at the lodge, along with more wine. We thought we were going to go home fattiea, but it turned out that our days on the rivers were ao long we didn't gain a pound.

In addition to the volcanic 'faces' another common feature is eroded sandstone walls.

One day in a small stream, looking to get a good photo, I handed off my rod with a fish on it to Andreas, one of our guides. Part of his good humour is to make a good shot, and also because it is supposed to be the other way round. And the rest of the humour in this one is the other guides out of the shot hooting and hollering because a guest has given a fish to a guide to catch. What a nice guest. We should ask him to come back. You should ask. I might just come.

One of the constant refrains from the guides as we floated down river was to cast the fly as close as we could get it to the bank. This one is Santos, on the right, telling Chad to put the fly on the bank. You will note heavy brush in the way. The downside on an overhead cast is that it turns over the fly vertically, so there is limited space between branch and water. I normally handle this by casting sidearm, and was promptly told not to do it by my guide one day. I just continued casting sidearm - the fly turns over horizontally, so you get further in under the branches, as in closer to the bank. And the reason we were gently reminded to cast as close to the bank as we could is because this is a dry fly fishery for hatching insects, which usually takes place at the banks were the nymphs climb out of the water, climb the grasses and hatch froom their underwater casings.

And just how close were those fish to the banks? This close.

We were going home to yet another dinner; beef for everyone else and chicken for me.

And the lounge upstairs.

And the golden stairs to the loft.

And after Golden Slumbers, yet another hard day on the water, guide straining to lift up Mr. Brown Trout. It was easily 50 pounds. You do believe me don't you? I thought so.

Our days were like this, vistas of water and sun.
And a photo of me. Do I look happy? You judge. The first two days I do what I normally do, count the fish I catch and promptly release. Well, after 100 returnees, I stopped counting. And this image is at the end of our trip

More images to come.

Tuesday 28 April 2020

Mass Marking Hatchery Fish

What follows is the Sport Fish Advisory Board's (SFAB) comment on marked coho/chinook fishing in southern BC, at hatcheries, by DFO for 2020 and succeeding years.

If you follow what I write, you would know there are a couple more things that would make a big difference: saltwater netpens with 2 million marked, sterilized (diploid or triploid) chinook each, of stocks that circle the Straight of Georgia (SOG) for part of their life cycle. This includes Cowichan, Harrison, and Nanaimo chinook. 12 netpens for 10 years minimum. Also, Nitinat and Robertson for Juan de Fuca.

The reason for netpens is that the fish return to the site of the netpen and do not go back into a river. Hence there is no genetic degradation because hatchery fish are not as 'robust' as their wild confreres. And marked, sterilized ones don't interbreed. A terminal fishery can mop them up when they return. In addition, immature marked fish can be kept, while wild ones released to go on their ways.

And only wild ones would go back into rivers. No epigenetics problems.

Here is what the SFAB has to say. It is worth reading, so do go and read this three page summary: https://sportfishing.bc.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/2020-SFAB-perspective-on-Mark-Selective-Fisheries-and-Mass-Marking.pdf.

Friday 14 February 2020

ENGOS Should be In-touch with Sport Fishing - We are allies, not Enemies

Hi Watershed Watch

I suggest you have a member who fishes get on the Sport Fish Advisory Board. The purpose would be to gain knowledge of how things actually work with respect to sport fishing.

Another thing to remember is that it is primarily sport fishers who undertake the largest role in putting on their gumboots and going into rivers for freshwater habitat restoration.

Also, the sport fishery is far larger than the rest of the salmon sectors in terms of jobs and revenue. Many of these have failed in the past two years because of closures, and many have lost jobs.

And, yes, last summer there were a lot more chinook in the waters than predicted. This led to distrust of DFO, who many see as the reason for 50 years of mismanagement and threatening most chinook, and coho in the Strait of Georgia since the 1990s to the point where many stocks are in crisis.

You might consider getting a member on the Pacific Salmon Foundation, the most important body for habitat restoration. Also, with the new structure, the Wild Salmon Advisory Committee, along with the PSF have the financial muscle to do habitat. This means that in due course, the province of BC has the basis to get on with the jobs that DFO has been remiss on.

Just a thought.

DC (Dennis) Reid

Monday 1 July 2019

Daniel Pauly – Vanishing Fish

Danial Pauly is the Nobel Prize level scientist from UBC who has done the Sea Around Us program/document/computer systems that put together global fish catches from 1950 to 2010. He has just had a new book out, that summarizes his stellar career and catch stats: Vanishing Fish – Shifting Baselines and the Future of Global Fisheries.

This book moves rapidly over five decades and all over the world where he has lived and worked in the fishery stats world, particularly the tropics. He has somehow managed to live several lives in multiple places with his greatest achievement to put different scientific areas together that had little previous interaction, figure out computer models to track catches and execute them. He has done several different modelling systems over the years, the Sea Around Us being where you can enter his world: http://www.seaaroundus.org/. It has nifty graphics on its home page. Go take a look.

Other issues included his term ‘shifting baselines’, the tendency of each new generation, in his case, science people, to consider what came before them as the baseline, rather than go back to the beginning to see how much really has been lost. An example would be east coast cod over the centuries, as interestingly put together by Mark Kurlansky, in Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World. The 500-year history is a cool read, which includes how black people ‘came’ to America, sugar plantations, and rum.
Shifting baselines means that each new generation has a faulty picture of where the fish resource was, and thus whatever solutions they have are wrong. 

Historically, fishing has had three major features: utilizing near shore waters and moving out until they drop into the abyss; developing different methods of fisheries to exploit deeper and deeper water, and the species found there; and moving into uglier species once the catch of what was wanted could no longer be caught, and further and further away from home port. And fuel subsidies have distorted effort.

Along with this there were a whole range of problems with the stats, and putting the stats together: commercial fishing demersal trawling methods destroyed the ocean floor, or benthos; ignoring discards; ignoring artisanal and sport fisheries; and, vast over reported catch from China, which lead to higher and false estimates of fish abundance. Along with this are the distorting effects of subsidies for fleets, tropical countries that were decades behind in the science and governance structures of Europe and North America. 

Additionally, fleets were developed with billion-dollar bank projects. They then moved all around the globe catching other people’s and global fish. EEZs means ‘exclusive economic zones’, meaning 200 miles offshore, in both Canada and the States, but now up to 270 nations. ‘Agreements’ which allowed distant fleets to plunder African, Ghana for instance, stocks lead to crashing numbers around the world. 

An example of how specific the coalesced global stats could be, Pauly’s project determined that Norway had destroyed the Jack Mackerel stocks off Chile, and on far Pacific, pelagic stocks of the same species. Here is the graph of that collapse:

The Sea Around Us determined that 19 of 20 global fish stocks of ‘reduction’ fisheries were collapsing, poorly managed, or both. It is the reason, after trashing them, fish farm companies now have to move to single cell algae, maggots, soybean and other materials to feed their carnivorous salmon.

Pauly points out that so-called ‘reduction’ fisheries destroyed distant stocks to make feed for agricultural species like cows, hogs, chickens, fish. Yes, even species that had never eaten a fish, have been stuffed with them, rather than catching these small, pelagics for third world humans. They are instead used to fatten up ‘meat’ for first world mouths, since only they can afford them.

The other kind of fisheries are for ‘direct human consumption’ and the sad commentary is that fully 25% of all global fish are for reduction fisheries. An additional 25% are discards, meaning unwanted fish that are killed while catching the intended target and are simply dumped overboard, rather than be required to be landed for human use. And more recently, ‘high grading’ which is the reprehensible turfing of dead target fish already caught, when the fishing boat comes in contact with larger members of the target species. Terrible.

Moving back to Pauly: the list of brought together subjects includes meshing ecology with biology, subjects that a non-specialist would think were always meshed, but not so. Pauly attended conferences around the world and worked in more places than all the rest of us put together. Perhaps his single best quality, is that he has a mind that can see what conceptual outcome is required, find a way to add together the various fields, including developing and meshing technical languages, rigorizing the data, holes and figuring out data that don’t exist.

Pauly is well connected with other scientists, which allows him to work with tons of distant people with good minds. The references number 702 and an alarming number bear his name. I say alarming because how come the rest of us haven’t done the same?... probably not a good thought train to move along the many miles. Or laziness, at least that has the shifting baseline of our sloth, as in the definition of a rationalization includes that it has to be made in our favour.

Pauly makes short forays into North American fisheries subjects, NOAA and DFO. He covers the Miller, Viral Signature work, so important to the Cohen Commission third session, which Cohen reconvened to cover disease. She showed that PRV, er, a Viral Signature affected up to 90% of Fraser sockeye, so badly that they failed to spawn, even if they made it back to their tributary. In other words: “The smoking gun.” The look on her face, when coaxed to say the words, is indelible in the mind.

Additionally, he went with Alexandra Morton to catch salmon fry in the Broughton Archipelago in shallow bays near shorelines. In 2001, for example, the escapement fell from, as I recall, 1,470,000 pink salmon to just exceeding 100,000, an absolute collapse. Pauly then, briefly mentions that he was alarmed to be in a meeting with DFO scientists, who, were trashing her personally saying she had ‘spiked’ the lice data.

Pauly also discusses ITQs, individual vessel quotas, TAC, total allowable catch, and how DFO uses those concepts and stats to divvy up potential catch among commercial, sport and First Nations. Anybody on the SFI, SFAB, WSAC, PSC and other technical committees would benefit from this book.

Vanishing Fish is clear, direct, succinct. It has an unmistakeable self authenticizing tone. Pauly comes across as a unique mind, with unique contacts, putting together unique minds and subject matters. It would be nice if there were many more of him. If would do humanity good. Read this book.