More needs to done to ease the fisheries regulation burden on the area, says CRD director Mike Hicks. (Sooke News Mirror)

CRD director fishes for answers in meeting with MP

Mike Hicks says more needs to done to ease the fisheries regulation burden on the area.

South Island salmon anglers are carrying a huge conservation load and cannot bear any more restrictions, a Capital Regional District director told Terry Beech, parliamentary secretary to Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc, last week.

A special CRD committee of the whole meeting was a rare chance for local officials to meet face-to-face with a federal politician on marine and fisheries issues.

Juan de Fuca Electoral Area director Mike Hicks told Beech, Liberal MP for Burnaby North Seymour, that more needs to done to ease the fisheries regulation burden on the area.

“The current restriction of the non-retention of a mature wild stock Chinook until July 15 has decimated the local sport fishing industry and perhaps more importantly ruined the recreational angling opportunity of our residents that has been enjoyed for generations,” Hicks said.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada puts restrictions in place in a number of fisheries along the chinook’s migration route to try to conserve those returning to the river in the spring and summer. They vary by area.

DFO closed the area from Cadboro Point to Sheringham Point – 130 kilometres from the Fraser River – last summer, a change which Hicks said local anglers weren’t consulted.

“Although this closure was questionable as a conservation measure it allowed the residents and guides to maintain an opportunity to fish for large chinook,” Hicks said, adding DFO extended the closure an addition 30 kilometres to Sombrio Point which resulted in a closure for chinook fishing until July 15.

Hicks would like to see the boundary for fishing regulations be re-established at Sheringham Point, west of Sooke.

“This relatively small boundary alteration would continue to achieve the conservation goals of DFO but would give local anglers and industry the opportunity to survive during these times of low abundance,” Hicks said.

Hicks asked Beech for a meeting with DFO’s Pacific Regional Director Andrew Thomson.

Beech told directors his objective for the meeting was to listen.

He said DFO is looking at ways to improve the process.

“We do our best to make hard decisions with available science with the full understanding of the difficulties these decisions put on coastal communities,” Beech said.

“I’m not against making difficult decisions but don’t want to cause unnecessary hardship when it’s not warranted.”

CLICK HERE to report a typo.

Is there more to this story? We’d like to hear from you about this or any other stories you think we should know about. Emaileditor@sookenewsmirror.com.

Just Posted

Victoria among Top 10 sunniest Canadian cities

Victoria ranks 6th in sunny days per year

Surge in requests for help, reports of sexual assault since #MeToo

Growing demand for Victoria Sexual Assault Clinic’s services in first year of #MeToo

Growing numbers of Vancouver Islanders get flu shots

In 2017 alone, more than 240,000 people got vaccinated

Vancouver Giants end Victoria Royals’ win streak

Victoria hockey club hosts defending champions Swift Current Wednesday night

Fries, gravy, cheese and goodwill: Victoria hosts Poutine Week

Buy one of the varying versions of this traditional dish and help feed hungry kids

Victoria teen suffers whiplash in school ‘bubble’ soccer game

Middle school students injured in teacher-student competition

Black Press to host extreme career fair in Victoria

The fair will run on Oct. 25 at the Bay Street Armoury

Joint inspection planned for missing journalist at Saudi Consulate

Turkish officials have said they fear a Saudi hit team killed and dismembered Washington Potst reporter Jamal Khashoggi

Sears files for bankruptcy amid plunging sales, massive debt

The company started as a mail order catalogue in the 1880s

BREAKING: Prince Harry and Meghan expecting their 1st child in spring

The announcement of the pregnancy confirms weeks of speculation from royal watchers

Enbridge to begin building road to access pipeline explosion site in B.C.

An explosion Tuesday knocked out a 91-centimetre line

Andrew Scheer on revamped NAFTA deal: ‘I would have signed a better one’

Conservative leader says he wouldn’t have signed USMCA

Matheson will have NHL hearing after Canucks rookie Pettersson hit

The 19-year-old Swedish centre appeared woozy after the hit

Most Read