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Fishery Notice - Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Subject: FN0859-Salmon - Fraser River Sockeye and Pink Update - Areas 11 to 29 - September 6, 2013

Fraser pink salmon have continued to show high abundance in marine assessment
areas, and pink directed fishing opportunities with non-retention of sockeye
are on-going. The Department has planned these fishery openings with a
cautious approach to minimize additional impacts on Fraser River sockeye. The
Department's priorities are to ensure that there is sufficient sockeye
returning to the spawning grounds and all fisheries are being managed to
minimize sockeye impacts. Fishers are requested to check for any restrictions
in their local areas.

In Canada, the Area B seine fishery is scheduled to continue in portions of
Area 12 and 29 until further notice. The commercial Area B Seine and Area H
troll fisheries also opened in portions of Area 13 on Friday, September 6, 2013
until further notice. These seine and troll fisheries will be managed as
Individual Transferable Quota (ITQ) fisheries and will be based on available
commercial total allowable catch (TAC) for pink salmon. Sockeye impacts will
also be managed using an ITQ of total allowable mortalities to account for
sockeye release mortality. As there is no available commercial sockeye TAC,
mandatory sockeye non-retention will be in effect and any sockeye encountered
must be released with the least possible harm. Survival rates of sockeye
released in this fishery are expected to be high.

An update from the September 6, 2013 Fraser River Panel meeting follows:

The Fraser River Panel met on September 6th to review assessment data on Fraser
River sockeye and pink salmon, to discuss fisheries management plans for the
harvest of pink salmon, and to review environmental conditions in the Fraser
River. Water temperatures within the Fraser River have remained above average
for this time of year but are well below those levels observed in August. The
passage of Fraser sockeye through the marine assessment areas has declined
significantly in recent days. The most recent 5 day average diversion rate of
Fraser sockeye continues to show a high migration through Johnstone Strait at
98% as of September 5, 2013. DNA analysis of samples collected from recent
test fisheries in Johnstone Strait and Juan de Fuca Strait continue to be
dominated by Summer-run sockeye followed closely by Late run sockeye. The
current total run size of Fraser sockeye is estimated at 3.732 million. The
daily migration of sockeye and pink salmon past Mission is currently being
assessed by an expansion of the Whonnook test fishery catches. Sockeye
migration past Mission has been in the range of 27,700 to 68,300 sockeye per
day for the last five days bringing the total estimated escapement to 3,311,100
as of September 5th. Pink salmon continue to enter the Fraser River with daily
migrations past Mission in the last few days in the 224,000 to 387,000 pink per
day range.

On September 5, 2013, there was no change to the Summer run size nor the 50%
run timing date. The low return of Summer-run sockeye has severely constrained
harvest opportunities that were expected during pre-season planning. Based on
pre-season information, Summer-run sockeye (Chilko, Quesnel, Late Stuart,
Stellako, Harrison, Raft, and North Thompson) were expected to provide most of
the fishing opportunities directed at Fraser sockeye this season. The estimated
escapement of Summer-run sockeye past Mission through September 5th is
2,123,700 fish.

At the Fraser Panel meeting today there was no change to the Late run size
estimate of 600,000, with a 50% Area 20 run timing date of August 17th. DNA
analysis from marine test fisheries indicates that Late Shuswap sockeye
continue to make up the majority of the Late run sockeye currently migrating
through the marine approach areas. The escapement of Late run sockeye past
Mission as of September 5, 2013 is estimated to be 493,000 fish.

Catches of pink salmon in marine test fisheries have declined in recent days
but remain well above expected levels. Recent DNA samples indicate that the
proportion of Fraser pink salmon have increased to 80-85% of the stock
composition in the approach areas. The other pink stocks are non-Fraser South
Coast Canadian stocks and stocks destined for Washington State river systems.
The diversion rate of Fraser River pink salmon through Johnstone Strait has
declined slightly over recent days to 74% on September 5th from 91% on
September 3rd, 2013. At the Fraser Panel meeting today the Fraser Panel adopted
a run size increase from 24 million to 26 million for Fraser Pink salmon with
no change to the estimated 50% migration timing through Area 20 of August 29th,
2013.

On September 5, 2013, the Fraser River water discharge at Hope was 2,252 cms,
which is approximately 13% lower than average for this date. The temperature of
the Fraser River at Qualark Creek on September 5th was 18.5 C, which is 2.5 C
higher than average. The Fraser Panel manages fisheries to provide additional
Fraser sockeye above the spawning escapement targets through application of
management adjustments. The management adjustments help ensure that the
escapement targets are achieved by off-setting en-route mortality and other
factors that could affect meeting spawning escapement targets. At the meeting
today the management adjustment factors remained unchanged at 2.48 for the
aggregate Summer run component. Management adjustments for the Early Summer run
component was changed to 0.8 from 0.85 and for the Late run component to 0.92
from 0.90.

At the meeting today the Panel approved extending ongoing US pink fisheries,
most of which are operating with non-retention sockeye restrictions in place.
For further information on US fisheries please see News and Announcements at
www.psc.org.

The next in-season meeting of the Panel is scheduled to occur on Tuesday,
September 10th, 2013.


FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Les Jantz
250-851-4892


Fisheries and Oceans Canada Operations Center - FN0859
Sent September 6, 2013 at 16:02
Visit us on the Web at http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca



Sent from my iPhone
 
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