NL racing to get salmon licences ready


NL racing to get salmon licences ready

Published: May 11 at 10:19 a.m.

Reprint being covered by federal Fisheries

A regional manager with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) says he is confident there will be licences available for salmon anglers in Newfoundland and Labrador by the time the fishing season opens.

“We will have licences to most vendors,” Tony Blanchard, who is responsible for area resource management, said in a brief interview with The Telegram Thursday.

Blanchard acknowledged the need for another reprinting of licences — an issue highlighted by provincial Fisheries and Land Resources Minister Gerry Byrne earlier this week.

Blanchard said the department accepted responsibility for an error in the existing licences, and will cover the cost of the reprint.

In a statement to the media Tuesday, reiterating comments to reporters earlier in the day, Byrne made it clear the province would look to recover the cost, but also could not guarantee licences would be ready in time.

This all followed on the heels of the highly anticipated management decisions from DFO regarding the Atlantic salmon season. The new angling rules have reduced retention (or catch-and-cook) to a single salmon for now.   

Response to the angling rules for 2018 have been mixed, with groups such as the Citizens Outdoor Rights Alliance being critical of the lack of even more restriction on catch-and-release fishing.

But the Salmonid Association of Eastern Newfoundland has called the retention limit and rules set out the right decision, and informed by science.

The Atlantic Salmon Federation, DFO and the Nunatsiavut Government have announced four, salmon-specific research projects to also add to the available science.

That work will include an effort to track salmon headed to the Labrador Sea, to a distance further than they have ever been tracked before.