Thursday, August 04, 2011

Email to DFO Regional Director General Farlinger

With things this afternoon looking like a ramping up of commercial activity for  August, we took the time to let the DFO boss know what we think about this possibility.
Dear Ms Farlinger,

The North Coast office of your Department has now allowed 5 gillnet openings in Area 4 Skeena. This is above the estimate provided in the 2011 IFMP.
Meanwhile, sockeye numbers have remained fairly strong and this raises the spectre of more gillnetting into August.

We would just like to take this opportunity to remind your Department that northern upriver users are not like the quiet folks at Port Alberni, who just allowed rampant gillnetting to basically annihilate their recreational sportfishery and tourism sector this summer. We take our stewardship of the Skeena steelhead resource very seriously and we will not sit idly by while your Department sanctions extended gillnetting that will ruin our fall fishery and hurt our steelhead tourism economy.

Mr Kotyk was not around for the 2006 season, but please be forewarned that if his office shows the slightest appearance of moving towards anything close to the 2006 level of over-fishing in August, with its substantial negative impacts on Skeena steelhead, the steelhead sportfishing sector will react in a very similar fashion to 2006.

Please shows us your Department has learned from the 2006 debacle and respects the value of Skeena steelhead to the upriver sportfishing tourism economy by curtailing any further gillnetting in August. And not to be flippant, but please dont bother replying with anything relating to 'selective' it is just a ridiculous know it and we know it.
Yours truly,

Keith Douglas
North Coast Steelhead Alliance

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