Sports anglers ignorant over First Nations fishing request

Thorkelson says recreational anglers on Skeena should count themselves lucky


Sports fishermen are making a big fuss over a four-day Chinook sports fishing closure by the Kitsumkalum First Nation of a small piece of the Skeena River.

The commercial gillnet fleet’s Chinook fishery did not take place this year at all, for the same reasons – reasons which commercial fishermen support.

The First Nations who usually harvest Skeena sockeye under their protected (Section 35 of Canada’s Constitution) food, social and ceremonial (FSC) rights agreed not to fish Sockeye in 2017. They also informed DFO, sports, commercial and conservation groups that their FSC needs would have to be met by taking larger than normal catches of Chinook and other species.

The DFO Skeena Harvest Rules normally set out that if the Skeena sockeye run size is less than 400,000, Fisheries Certificate System (FCS) fishing on sockeye shall cease. This year, Skeena First Nations voluntarily agreed that they would not harvest sockeye unless the run size was 625,000. This increase in escapement protection was done voluntarily by FNs in order to safeguard Skeena Sockeye. DFO is presently predicting the sockeye run size as 600,000 and FN are not food fishing sockeye.

The creel survey on the lower Skeena indicates that over 1,000 Kalum springs have been killed and taken home by sports fishermen. So far, the Kitsumkalum First Nation has caught around 100. The commercial net fleet has taken none.

Sports fishermen should count themselves lucky that they are taking more springs in Kalum’s territory than the Kalum people are. Kitsumkalum First Nation is using two seven-inch mesh selective nets (no beach seines) which will catch very large fish only, in order to avoid smaller (sockeye) species.

It is so very ignorant for sports fishermen, who have no real economic need, no real food need, and no ceremonial or social necessity, to complain that they have been shut out of a tiny area while the First Nations people who have a right to provide themselves with fish, are taking so few.

Joy Thorkelson,

Prince Rupert, B.C.

Just Posted

College buys a yurt to boost student success

Round tent-like structure part of college instructional shift

Soup kitchen sees “groundswell of community support”

Donations toward looming tax bill push non-profit back in the black

Terrace husband and wife honoured for saving each other’s lives

BC Ambulance presented each a Vital Link Award for separate incidents of CPR

Council supports lobby for fair share of cannabis tax revenue

The City of Terrace is throwing its support behind a West Kelowna… Continue reading

Airport registers modest passenger increase

Manager anticipates further growth in 2018 as expansion project nears completion

Airport registers modest passenger increase

Manager anticipates further growth in 2018 as expansion project nears completion

RCMP nail sex toy thief

Shop owner plays a role in arrest

Ice-cream-eating bear draws controversy

An Alberta Wildlife Park posted a video this week of one of their bears going through a Dairy Queen drive-through

Fernie, RCMP go to court over city log books in fatal ammonia leak probe

Log books center stage in clashing of investigations between the city and RCMP

B.C.’s biggest pot plant planned for Oliver

Co-founder Tony Holler said the 700,000 sq. ft. facility would produce 100,000 kg of pot per year

High-end whisky seized in B.C. bar raids

Raids end in seizures at Victoria, Nanaimo and Vancouver whisky joints

Double-doubles and demonstrations: Employees rally outside Tim Hortons

Protests held in response to Ontario franchise owners cutting employee benefits and breaks

Train derails in Northwest B.C.

CN reports no injuries or dangerous goods involved after coal train derailment.

Las Vegas shooter acted alone, exact motive still undetermined: Sheriff

Stephen Paddock was behind the gunfire that killed 58 people including two Canadians

Most Read