Seeking to save the steelhead

alkem said his grandfather’s generation would spear fish at night in winter as a food fishery, when returns were in the tens of thousands

The steelhead is a sea-run form of the rainbow trout that usually returns to fresh water to spawn after living two to three years in the ocean.

Cam Fortems – Kamloops This Week

The number of steelhead returning to the Thompson River system this year reached a new low of just 380 fish, as a working group attempts to come up with a recovery plan.

David Walkem, chief of Cook’s Ferry Indian Band, said the effort to recover the fish has been frustratingly slow and he cannot point to a concrete effort that will be in place a year from now.

“Getting a co-ordinated, focused approach is not going to happen in a year,” he said. “In two years, we may not be having anything to worry about.”

The band is located at Spences Bridge, at one time a mecca in fall for anglers from around the world who came for the trophy fish. Walkem said his grandfather’s generation would spear fish at night in winter as a food fishery, when returns were in the tens of thousands.

They stopped 40 years ago, when returns were in the 4,000 to 5,000 a year.

Thompson Steelhead Working Group, comprised of federal and provincial governments as well as First Nations and stakeholder groups, is seeking feedback on a proposed recovery plan.

The document and survey can be found online at thompsonsteelhead.ca and the survey is open until Dec. 16.

Walkem said part of the problem is the neither the federal nor provincial government has taken ownership of the problem.

The federal government is concerned only through commercial fishing while the province is concerned through sport fishing — both taking a legalistic view while the resource perishes.

The focus now, he said is to come up with a framework for recovery “and to start working on it.”

A federal committee is looking at species at risk designation for Thompson steelhead.

 

Walkem said he is unsure whether that will help or hinder the recovery effort.

 

 

Just Posted

Pipeline protesters move ‘tiny house’ camp north after leader’s arrest

Kanahus Manuel says on Facebook group has moved to the work camp at Blue River

Update: Park pipeline protesters say arrest is a ‘declaration of war’

Led by Kanahus Manuel, the Tiny House Warriors moved into park in Clearwater last week

Police investigating more racist slogans on First Nations signs

Police are investigating racist graffiti being posted on First Nations signs in the Kamloops area

France doubles up Croatia 4-2 to win World Cup

Played in Moscow Russia, latest Fifa World Cup marks the highest scoring final since 1966

Update: Kamloops wildfire now mapped at 500 hectares

Firefighters worked overnight on what was a fast-growing wildfire east of Kamloops.

VIDEO: Visual recap of Vancouver Island MusicFest

Walk Off The Earth, Passenger, Arlo Guthrie among highlights

Temperature records break across southern B.C. as heat continues

Whistler broke a 70-year-old record high of 32.2 C with a temperature of 32.9 C

Hawaii volcano boat tours continue after ‘lava bomb’ injuries

“An explosion occurred near the shoreline hurling hot lava rocks towards the boat and injuring several passengers.”

Trump returns from summit with Putin to forceful criticism

“Shameful,” ”disgraceful,” ”weak,” were a few of the comments. Makes the U.S. “look like a pushover,” said GOP Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee.

Obama to deliver Mandela address in likely rebuke to Trump

Former U.S. President Barack Obama Monday praised Kenya’s president and opposition leader for working together but said this East African country must do more to end corruption.

Trudeau asks transport minister to tackle Greyhound’s western pullout

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s asked Transport Minister Marc Garneau to find solutions in Greyhound Canada’s absence.

Missing B.C. Serval cat creates buzz online, pleas for help

Aquila, an African Serval, disappeared from a Fernie, B.C. backyard sometime on Friday, July 13.

Trudeau’s youth council divided over Trans Mountain pipeline purchase

A letter signed by 16 past and present members was made public today, asking the federal government to reverse course

Hulk Hogan reinstated into wrestling Hall of Fame

Hogan had used racial slurs caught on video when talking about his daughter sleeping with a black man

Most Read