Each day, as volunteers scoop the fish out of the trap with a large net, they are counted and tracked by gender using a multiple tally device. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Each day, as volunteers scoop the fish out of the trap with a large net, they are counted and tracked by gender using a multiple tally device. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Colquitz River salmon draw school kids and passersby alike

Seventy salmon counted passing through the fish fence since September

“You don’t get to haul fish behind London Drugs at a shopping mall very often,” said Salmon in the City volunteer and Colquitz River advocate Dorothy Chambers while assessing coho salmon caught in the fish fence in the Colquitz River Park behind the Tillicum Shopping Centre on Tuesday.

Volunteers from Salmon in the City –a project funded by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) – crowded around the fish trap – which received a new metal top earlier this year – pulling out salmon after salmon while a group of preschoolers from Pearkes Recreation Centre squealed with delight. Each year, the children come down to the river everyday during salmon season – October through to December – in hopes of catching a glimpse of the fish.

The first preschool group is now in Grade 6, said Chambers, and they still come down with their classes.

On Tuesday, 12 salmon were pulled out of the trap, but there aren’t always fish in the trap when the children come by. However, there is lots of other wildlife for them to observe. Chambers noted that seals have begun to come up the river to feed along with otters, minks and raccoons.

Several other residents stopped mid-walk to watch the large fish wiggle in the net before getting plopped back into the river to spawn. Chambers invited adults to try scooping some salmon with the net so she could assess gender and size and look for an adipose fin – if they’ve got the fin, they’re wild salmon, she explained.

All collected data is reported to the DFO to keep track of the local salmon population.

Salmon in the City volunteers come down to the fish fence several times a day every single day. There are about 10 regular volunteers and if they happen to be busy, Chambers said she drags her husband down to help count.

Volunteers have pulled 70 salmon out of the Colquitz River fish trap so far this season. The trap went in at the end of September because of the amount of rain that fell, Chambers explained.

Early rains are good because they clear the roads and pathways before the salmon start to arrive. She expects to be counting salmon until November or December.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Various Victoria locations were hit with a slew of anti-bylaw graffiti Wednesday. This image has been altered to cover up profane language. (Submitted photo)
UPDATED: Slew of anti-bylaw graffiti an ‘unacceptable’ form of communication says Victoria mayor, police

Downtown businesses, bylaw office and Ministry of Finance vandalized Wednesday morning

The Gordon Head Recreation Centre stands in as the Quimper Regional Hospital on Feb. 23 for filming Maid, a 10-part Netflix series. (Greg Sutton/District of Saanich)
Netflix transforms Saanich recreation centre into hospital for filming

Facility was closed to public Feb. 23 for filming of Maid

Greg Chow is the 2021 Local Hero of the Year. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Fighting fire a family affair for Colwood Assistant Chief Greg Chow

With 38 years of service, Greg Chow is the 2021 Hero of the Year

This rendering shows plans for the new “flyover”overpass connecting northbound traffic on Highway 17 heading west on Keating Cross Road. Plans currently seeking public input propose two options for the median along Keating Cross Road. Option 1 will prevent left turns onto Tamany Drive and Buena Vista Road. Option 2 (seen here)will allow for left turns onto Tamany Drive and Bujena Vista Road. (Screencap/Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)
Public asked for comment on proposed overpass for Pat Bay in Central Saanich

New flyover overpass proposed for Highway 17 and Keating Cross Road

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Feb. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media File Photo)
POLL: Are you struggling with Greater Victoria’s cost of housing?

While Victoria remains one of the most expensive cities in the country… Continue reading

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

Photograph By @KAYLAXANDERSON
VIDEO: Lynx grabs lunch in Kamloops

A lynx surprises a group of ducks and picks one off for lunch

When his owner had knee surgery, Kevin, 2, was able to continue to go for walks thanks to volunteers from Elder Dog Canada. (Contributed photo)
B.C. woman has nothing but praise for Elder Dog Canada

National organization has a fleet of volunteer walkers ready, but needs more clients to serve

Two women were arrested in Nanaimo for refusing to wear masks and causing disturbance on a BC Ferries vessel. (File photo)
B.C. ferry passengers arrested and fined for disturbance, refusing to wear masks

Police said woman threatened their pensions in Feb. 21 incident aboard Nanaimo-bound boat

A Nanaimo RCMP vehicle in the Woodgrove Centre parking lot. (News Bulletin file photo)
Woman groped by stranger in mall parking lot in Nanaimo

Incident happened near bus loop Saturday, Feb. 20, at about 4:45 p.m.

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

Most Read