Vancouver Sun: “Tsunami of spawning sockeye floods into Adams River”

Larry Pynn from the Sun writes:

So many sockeye are expected to arrive that the Adams River cannot accommodate them all, resulting in salmon seeking out other streams in the Shuswap region such as Scotch Creek, which has already had bumper returns this year.

Jeremy Heighton, the federal fisheries department’s representative for the Salute to the Sockeye Festival, running through Oct. 24, said counting the sockeye is continuing, although anecdotally “we’re seeing more fish at this point in the run than in the past.”

Already the river is about 60-per-cent full of sockeye, which is one to one and a half weeks ahead of schedule.

Whether or not all the sockeye spawn successfully, the bodies of the dead spawned-out salmon and their eggs are a huge nutritional source, both immediately to a host of plants and animals, but also later to emerging fry.

“Too many fish is a subjective statement,” Heighton said. “This is a bonanza for the animals, for the ecosystem. It’s like filling your fridge with everything you could imagine and being able to go in there and gorge yourself. It’s an incredible opportunity.”

Bravo, Mr. Heighton from DFO… now, if only…

If only the rest of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans would adopt that attitude.

Salmon as a bonanza for the animals and for the ecosystem…? you bet it is.

Yet…

SFU Salmon Think Tank - Dec. 2009

For over 40 years: DFO, fisheries scientists and fisheries advocates allowed – even made it policy, that about 80% of Fraser sockeye runs should be caught every year. Maximum Sustainable Yield? (for whom? — well…one critter in the ecosystem)

If it turns out this year that the catch is less than 50% of the total Fraser Run, and this is a bonanza… what does this mean the years between the 1950s and 90s were?

What is the opposite of bonanza?

Well for bears… probably “starvation”…


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