Commercial boats ready to chase sockeye in Fraser

This year will be the best since the healthy sockeye run of 2010.

A commercial fishery for sockeye salmon is expected to open Monday on the Fraser River.

A commercial fishery for sockeye salmon is expected to open Monday on the Fraser River.

The sports fishermen have savoured this year’s sockeye run on the Fraser River.

Now it’s almost time for the commercial fishermen.

But they’ll have to wait one more weekend.

“Every thing points to a fishery on Monday, and we don’t know if that will be for 24 or 12 hours,” said Bob McKamey, with the Area E Gillnetters Association.

He’s been told by Fisheries and Oceans Canada to be ready at a moment’s notice for the word to get out on the river between Steveston and Mission and get their nets in the water.

This year will be the best since the healthy sockeye run of 2010, McKamey said. The last two years have been bleak, with only one chum opening each of the past two years and no sockeye fisheries.

“They have waited a long time for a sockeye fishery. A lot us are just looking forward to getting a fresh one to the table.”

“We’re hoping, and we have reason to believe that’s not going to be the case in the next four years.”

Despite the optimism over this year’s sockeye fishery, he doesn’t believe the prediction of 70 million sockeye coming up the Fraser River this year.

“That’s unrealistic, from our point of view.”

But he does expect the 300 or so commercial gillnetting boats to be on the river from Steveston to Mission for several weeks.

“We’re expecting regular week-day openings from now until September.”

And he expects no changes as a result of the collapse of the mining tailing ponds at Mount Polley Mine.

“At this point in time, it hasn’t affected the scheduled sockeye opening. It’s questionable whether that will actually affect the Fraser system.”

Area director for Fisheries and Oceans Canada Jennifer Nener wouldn’t confirm if a commercial opening was coming Monday.

“We won’t be making a decision on next week before our Fraser River panel meeting tomorrow [Friday].”

The panel said in an Aug. 5 notice that Fraser River temperatures of 20 C are two degrees warmer than average. The river flow is also 16 per cent below average.

But that should improve as the days grow shorter and cooler.

“To date, we haven’t seen signs of fish being really stressed in the river,” she said. “Things seem to be shaping up fairly well.”

Limited recreational fisheries for sockeye opened on the Fraser River last week, with catch limits of four per day below the Mission Bridge, while aboriginal ceremonial and food sockeye fishing started two weeks ago.

A limit of two sockeye per day has been set Wednesday for the Fraser RIver upstream of Mission.

 

Just Posted

FVRD surveyed public opinion on cannabis production and processing in the electoral areas. Odour and distance from residential areas were the top concerns. (Black Press file)
Cannabis production and processing rules being drafted by Fraser Valley Regional District

Data from public opinion survey will be used to guide cannabis-related land use

Robert Nelson, 35, died after being stabbed at a homeless camp in Abbotsford on April 7 of this year.
Mom pleads for information about son’s killing at Abbotsford homeless camp

Robert Nelson, 35, described as ‘man who stood for justice, honour, respect’

Police arrest the suspect in an attempted armed bank robbery on June 2 at the Scotiabank at Gladwin Road and South Fraser Way in Abbotsford. (Photo by Garry Amyot)
Abbotsford bank robbery suspect who was stopped by customers faces more charges

Neil Simpson now faces total of eight charges, up from the initial two

poster
Drop-in Covid vaccine clinic in Mission June 17-18

Neighbourhood clinics complement appointment-based clinics currently operating in Mission

Logo
Canadian Blood Service is adding additional donor clinics in Mission

New Sunday clinics begin June 20, donors can register online

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Officials watching U.K.’s variant struggles, but don’t think B.C. will need to up restrictions

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

David and Collet Stephan leave for a break during an appeal hearing in Calgary on Thursday, March 9, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Appeal Court rejects stay for Alberta couple facing third trial in son’s death

Pair accused in their earlier trials of not seeking medical attention for their son sooner

Highway notices like this come down effective June 14. Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and commercial operation have hit local businesses in every corner of B.C. (B.C. government)
Province-wide travel back on in B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan

Gathering changes include up to 50 people for outdoor events

Calgary Stampeders’ Jerome Messam leaps over a tackle during second half CFL western semifinal football action in Calgary, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
CFL football will be played this summer in Canada

Governors vote unanimously in favour to start the ‘21 campaign on Aug. 5

Citizenship Minister Marco Mendicino holds a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020. The federal government is announcing that Indigenous people can now apply to reclaim their names on passports and other government documents. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous people can now reclaim traditional names on their passports and other ID

Announcement applies to all individuals of First Nations, Inuit and Métis background

Most Read