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June 4 Press Release of Province of Newfoundland and Labrador

PROVINCE OF NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR
Fisheries and Land Resources
June 4, 2018

Province Amends Angling Regulations to Conserve Atlantic Salmon

The Provincial Government has amended regulations under the Wild Life Act to cap catch-and-release salmon angling activity to a maximum of 10 salmon per licence until July 20. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans has set a catch-and-release limit of three salmon per day.

Prior to this amendment, there were no regulations in place regarding the practice of catch-and-release angling except for the number of fish an angler can catch and release in one day. This amendment will ensure the practice is regulated and conducted in a safe, sustainable manner. Enforcement officers will be monitoring to ensure anglers are adhering to the regulations.

Other measures to support increased survival of catch and release salmon will be considered in the coming weeks. Reviving and releasing the fish as quickly as possible ensures the best chance the salmon will have to survive. Please see attached backgrounder.

Fisheries and Land Resources is undertaking a Newfoundland and Labrador-specific study of catch-and-release angling and its impact on salmon mortality to ensure availability of the best possible science on which to base future regulations.

Salmon licences are currently available for purchase from vendors on the west coast and central Newfoundland, where in-river salmon runs are underway in the greatest number and current angling demand is highest. Licences will be available for purchase in other regions of the province and for non-residents in the coming days. For the 2018 angling season only, all resident salmon licences will be sold for $5 plus HST instead of $23 (plus HST and a $3-vendors’ fee) charged in previous years. Non-resident licences will continue to cost $80 plus the revised $5-vendor fee.

Quote
“This salmon season we encourage anglers to get out and enjoy the activity they love while maintaining a strong and vigilant presence on our province’s rivers. We remind anglers engaging in catch-and-release activity to use safe and sustainable practices to ensure salmon survival.”
Honourable Gerry Byrne
Minister of Fisheries and Land Resources

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Media contact
Linda Skinner
Fisheries and Land Resources
709-637-2284, 632-8167
lindaskinner@gov.nl.ca

BACKGROUNDER

Federal regulations require the use of barbless hooks. Do not use a tailer.

The following practices are recommended and may be considered by the Minister of Fisheries and Land Resources to include in future regulations:

  • Use of landing nets made of knotless mesh, which is less harmful to fish scales, gills and eyes.
  • A leader tip should be heavy enough to bring in large salmon quickly, or light enough to allow large salmon to break off.
  • Move to a quiet water location.
  • Bring the fish quickly into reach, or break it off after a couple of runs.
  • Do not beach the salmon; keep the entire salmon underwater.
  • Handle the salmon gently; do not squeeze the fish. Avoid touching the gills and eyes. Loss of scales and damage to the gills caused by pressure on the gills or by removal from the water are the most serious injuries a salmon can suffer.
  • Remove the hook gently with pliers or with your thumb and forefinger. If the hook must be left in, cut the leader as close to it as possible.
  • Support the fish under the belly, keeping it in an upright position, underwater and facing into the current.
  • Measure your fish and have a photo taken. Remember to keep the fish in the water at all times and do not hold the fish vertically by the tail.
  • Be patient. Give the fish as much time as it needs to recover and swim away on its own.
  • Anglers should cease catch-and-release angling in extreme environmental conditions (low water levels and high water temperatures).
2018 06 04                              4:45 p.m.