Dominic Hope, Fisheries Manager
Eulachon: in mid April, our friends at Katzie First Nation caught some Eulachons and were able to share with the Yale First Nation. Eulachons were distributed as widely as possible to provide a fresh feed of Eulachons to several households and families. YFN always appreciates the Katzie efforts, experience and generous considerations.
Fishwheel: The Yale Fishwheel is in operation again this season. It has operated the past two seasons with the assistance of Karl English and LGL. The past two seasons the fishwheel operation was funded by the Habitat Conservation and Trust Fund. This program involved YFN, LGL and the Matqui FN Fishwheels to demonstrate selectivity, among other objectives. This season the Yale Fishwheel is initially funded by LGL and the Pacific Salmon Foundation. Again YFN is working with LGL and Matqui FN fishwheels. The Fishwheel was towed on April 20, 2021 to the Powerline Site, which is above Gordon Creek and below the town of Yale. The Fishwheel was deployed earlier this season to focus efforts on the Earlier Timed Chinook. These will be selectively caught, radio tagged and release unharmed. As they migrate upstream, the chinook will be tracked and see if there are any difficulties in migration such as the Big Bar Landslide etc.
The DFO has invited First Nations to provide proposals for capital acquisitions for their fishery programs. With the assistance of Advisor, Terrance Bedard, Yale submitted a couple of proposals. The initial proposal submitted was approved for the purchase of a safe boat for the Yale Fishwheel program, safety gear and training. The secondary proposal was for a boat shelter and storage for gear and supplies for the fishwheel program. This structure is to be located on IR#8.
Although fishing and fisheries opportunities have been challenging over the past few seasons there was a positive; the Yale Fishwheel provided some members with chinook harvests selectively caught and distributed. It is anticipated that the Fishwheel will continue to be beneficial to the YFN community. It is also seen as a good platform to contribute to valuable information by catching and releasing species and stock to the river unharmed. Some of these catches can be tagged or sampled and used to provide management information.
YFN has had Tessa Poole work as the Lead Monitor for the past few seasons. She has also worked with the Fishwheel crew as well as other fisheries related activities and projects. She has had to step back from these fisheries programs due to her personal commitments. Tessa did an excellent job and contributed to the expansion of the Fisheries Program. Connie Belair will be taking on the Lead Monitor position this season. Connie has worked several seasons with Yale’s Catch Monitoring Program. Connie will take on the Fishwheel and Lead Monitor responsibilities. Fishers and members can expect to be contacted by Connie in the near future regarding fishery notices and/or opportunities.
The Yale Fisheries program is expanding in several ways and the Fishwheel Program will assist and contribute to the good management of the fishery into the future.
Any questions can be directed to Dominic Hope,