Hot Summer Temperatures Bad News for Anglers


Hot Summer Temperatures Bad News for Salmon Anglers

July 24, 2014

The smoking hot summer temperatures have taken a toll on Newfoundland and Labrador salmon rivers, with almost half of the fishing spots now closed to anglers.

Most of those 83 salmon rivers are located in central Newfoundland, and have been shut down thanks to scorching temperatures and hot sunny skies.

Fred Parsons, with the Environment Resources Management Association, said the year has been rough on people hoping to catch salmon in the area.

"I can't remember a year that it was really quite this bad," said Parsons.

"I know there's been years that we've had periods, probably three or four days, then usually mother nature would come with a little bit of fresh rainfall and things would be back to normal, but this is certainly an extraordinary year."

According to Parsons, temperatures at some of the tributaries have topped 27 C, which can be lethal to adult salmon. It's also disrupted some of his research.

"A lot of the work we had planned for the summer we've had to put on hold, even for sampling. When water temperatures get up anywhere around 19, 20 C, we don't want to do any sampling, which is not that invasive on the fish but it's better not to take any chances," he said.

Only die-hard anglers like John Pardy are still out on the Exploits River, one of the few spots still open.

"The water is low and warm and the fish aren't even holding up, they're just swimming right on by," Pardy said.

"[I've] been here since 6:30 and I've seen two fish, I think, come out of the water. It's pretty terrible, actually."

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans said re-opening the rivers will only happen with several days of substantial rainfall and cooler temperatures, a break in the weather that isn't anywhere in the forecast yet.