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Fishery Notice - Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Subject: FN0653-Salmon: Fraser River Sockeye Update - August 13 - Areas 11 to 29

The Fraser River Panel met today to review stock assessment data on the Fraser
River sockeye runs, plan fisheries, and discuss sockeye migration conditions in
the Fraser River watershed. Test fishing and commercial catch data collected
over the past several days indicates a variable but increasing migration of
Fraser sockeye through the marine approach routes. Purse seine test fishing
catches in Areas 12 and 20 were strong yesterday. Assessments conducted thus
far suggest that the marine timing of Early Stuart, Early Summer-run and Summer-
run sockeye is considerably later than was expected during pre-season planning.
DNA analyses indicate that the stock composition of Fraser sockeye in the Areas
12 and 20 marine approach routes to the Fraser River are averaging about 15%
Early Summer-run, 30% Summer-run, and 55% Late-run sockeye. The diversion rate
of Fraser sockeye through Johnstone Strait is currently estimated to be
approximately 45%. The migration of sockeye past Mission and Hells Gate has
also been strong over the past several days. The estimated total commercial
catch of Fraser sockeye to-date is 777,000 fish, while non-commercial catches
(from test, First Nations FSC, Charter, and recreational fisheries) total
392,000 fish.

The marine migration of Early Summer-run sockeye has been protracted this
season. At the meeting today, the current run size estimate of 1,600,000 Early
Summer-run sockeye was increased to 2,000,000 fish. The 50% marine migration
timing of Early Summer-run sockeye through Area 20 is estimated to be August 3.
The estimated escapement of Early Summer-run sockeye past Mission through
August 12 is 1,129,000 fish.

The marine migration of Summer-run sockeye and particularly Chilko sockeye has
increased in recent days. At the meeting today, the Panel approved a run size
estimate of 2,600,000 Summer-run sockeye. Assessments of the marine timing of
Summer-run sockeye are still uncertain, however the current estimate of the 50%
marine migration timing of Summer-run sockeye through Area 20 is August 10. The
estimated escapement of Summer-run sockeye past Mission through August 12 is
760,000 fish.

Late-run sockeye continue to comprise an increasing proportion of the sockeye
migrating through the marine approach areas and there are early indications
that some of them are delaying in the lower Strait of Georgia prior to entering
the Fraser River. The gulf troll test fishery will be starting next week to
conduct assessments of the abundance of Late-run sockeye that are delaying
their migration. A total abundance assessment for Late-run sockeye should be
available later next week, unless their marine migration timing is considerably
later than expected. At the meeting today, the provisional run size estimate of
400,000 Harrison sockeye was increased to an estimate of 700,000 fish with 50%
marine timing through Area 20 of August 4. The estimated escapement of Late-run
sockeye past Mission through August 12 is 597,000 fish.

On August 12 the discharge of the Fraser River at Hope was 2,960 cms, which is
19% below average for this date. The temperature of the Fraser River at Qualark
Creek on August 12 was 18.3 0C, which is 0.5 0C above average for this date.
Fraser River water temperatures at Qualark Creek are forecast to increase to
over the next week. At the meeting today, after reviewing environmental and
stock assessment information, the Panel increased the management adjustment
factor for Early Summer-run sockeye from 0.84 to 1.0 and for Summer-run sockeye
a management adjustment factor of 0.24 was adopted. Management adjustments are
employed to help achieve spawning escapement targets for Fraser River sockeye.


The following fisheries are ongoing/planned:

Licence Area H troll remains open until further notice in portions of
Management Areas 12, 13, 18 and 29 at current quota levels. Please refer to the
specific Fishery Notice for further details.

Recreational fishing is open for sockeye retention in south coast marine areas
and in the Fraser River. Please refer to the specific Fishery Notices for
further details.

First Nation fisheries vary by areas with opportunities in marine areas, the
Fraser River area; consult with local DFO offices for openings.

The next Fraser River Panel meeting is scheduled for Sunday, August 15th. A
further update regarding further potential fishing opportunities will be
provided on this date.


FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Barry Rosenberger 250-851-4892

Fisheries and Oceans Canada Operations Center - FN0653
Sent August 13, 2010 at 15:34
Visit us on the Web at http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca
 
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