CBC - NB
Maritime salmon catch and release policy extended another year
Fishing for salmon will still be allowed, but any fish caught must be released
By Lisa Blackburn, CBC News Posted: Apr 13, 2016 7:49 PM AT
For a second year, anglers will not be allowed to keep any Atlantic salmon caught in the Maritimes.
Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Hunter Tootoo announced the conservation measure Wednesday.
In a release, the department said the decision to extend the policy was made after consultation with scientists and the public. They said scientific data showed the lowest returns on record of Atlantic salmon in many rivers in the Gulf region over the past five years.
The waters under the catch and release order include all the waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence adjacent to the eastern coast of New Brunswick, the Northumberland Strait coast of Nova Scotia and western Cape Breton Island, as well as all of Prince Edward Island.
In 2014, the number of salmon returning to the Miramichi River in New Brunswick was about 12,000, which is about half the number recorded annually over the previous three years.
That prompted the 2015 restriction by then Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Gail Shea. At that time it was hoped one year would be enough to improve salmon numbers.