Where are the Salmon?

The Fraser Basin Council‘s latest State of the Fraser Basin Report indicates that several species of Fraser salmon are in a perilous decline. The report, entitled Sustainability Snapshot 4: The Many Faces of Sustainability, rates Fraser sockeye, coho, and chinook salmon stocks as “poor/getting worse.” Sockeye runs in 2007 and 2008 were “the lowest observed in 30 years.”


Among the reasons cited in the report for the salmon’s plight include poor ocean survival, climate change, mixed-stock fishing, habitat destruction, water quality, and lack of information to fish managers. Critics also point a finger at salmon farms for the potential transfer of lice and disease to wild stocks. … [read full article]

On the front page of today’s Vancouver Sun, columnist Miro Cernetig suggests that “we need a salmon strategy” so that British Columbians are continually reminded of salmon’s importance. 

Right now, British Columbia has a provincial flower, the dogwood. A provincial bird, the Steller’s jay. A provincial tree, the western red cedar and, more recently, a mammal, the Spirit Bear (the white kermode bear). But we have, for reasons that mystify me, no provincial fish.  I nominate the salmon — all five species — as our provincial fish. … [read full article]

Perhaps it’s time to revive the provincial fish program which was designed to encourage citizens to value, respect, and protect all of B.C.’s fishes.  The program had a near-start last year and would have seen the Vancouver Aquarium and the B.C. Youth Parliament working together with B.C. schools to elect a provincial fish.

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