LETTER TO FISHERIES & OCEANS CANADA (DFO)
Hon. Dominic LeBlanc, Minister
The Fraser River Recreational angling community has united under the banner of the “Fraser River Sport
Fishing Alliance” (FRSA). We believe this newly created alliance is truly representative of all aspects of the angling community. It is our intent to work with the Sport Fish Advisory Board and other sectors of the Fraser River salmon fishery.
We are requesting your serious consideration of the following requests:
- The Fraser River be reopened immediately to chinook fishing with selective fishing methods only. These methods have been well documented by DFO staff.
- The small identified areas of non compliance to selective fishing be posted as temporarily closed and this closure be enforced.
The above request would provide some fishing opportunity for the limited time remaining in the chinook fishery and salvage a small portion of the tremendous loss to local communities and businesses.
Selective fishing for chinook salmon is demonstrated as having zero impact on stocks of concern such as the current summer sockeye returns. Considering the thousands of sockeye currently being killed through the ongoing illegal net fisheries our request for reinstating a family oriented totally non sockeye impact fishery seems reasonable.
It should be noted that closure of over 200 kilometers of river seems punitive when any impact on sockeye stocks from non selective anglers has been identified in a small area of perhaps 20 kilometers. Why deny families the opportunity for a summer salmon outing in the remaining 180 kilometers? We suggest that implementation of spot closures is the solution.
We have for some time offered to work with your Fraser River staff to ensure that all anglers understand the need for selective fishing when stocks of concern are in the river. To date we have had zero response to our offer. We believe our request is valid and our chinook fisheries can be reinstated with no impact on threatened sockeye stocks.
Thank you for your consideration and prompt response to our request.
Rod Clapton FRSA spokesperson
Fred Helmer FRSA spokesperson