Monday, August 19, 2013
Concern Mounting Over Dean River Steelhead Bycatch
The last two summers the Dean River has seen some of its best steelhead returns in decades. Unfortunately, this summer it sounds as though numbers are down considerably, and anglers are concerned that the commercial gillnet fleet is adversely affecting already low numbers of steelhead returning to the Dean. Apparently, observations of gillnet scarred steelhead are higher than normal this year, prompting calls for reduced fishing intensity and changes in gear types to make the fishery more selective. While a number of factors, including variable ocean conditions contribute to year to year variation in steelhead returns, non-selective fishing methods like gillnets can impose unsustainable harvest rates, hurting steelhead populations and BC's economy in the process.
More information from the Steelhead Society of BC: