2017 Skeena Sockeye Management Plan
In 2017, the total sockeye return to the entire Skeena River is expected to be 500,000. The average return is about 2 million. The predicted 2017 return would be about the same size as the return in 2013 that led to dramatic reductions in food fish harvest for LBN. LBN Fisheries is involved in watershed wide discussions to develop a plan to protect LBN wild sockeye and provide sockeye for food fish if possible. LBN should not expect a food fishery for sockeye in 2017. These efforts will help ensure more fish for future LBN generations.
In 2017, all fisheries up the line (including LBN food fisheries) for Babine sockeye will be closed until the return is certain to be greater than 600,000. This will help ensure that if sockeye for food fish are available to harvest, LBN will be able to do so.
If the return of sockeye is low, all First Nations along the Skeena River will face constraints on their food fisheries for sockeye. Watershed wide discussions are occurring to ensure equitable distribution of sockeye amongst First Nations, if enough sockeye return.
Only 1 out of 3 sockeye in the Skeena aren't from the Pinkut or Fulton River channels. A minimum return of 600,000 to the Skeena River will help protect Babine wild populations.
All First Nations along the Skeena are looking for ways to increase their harvest of non-Skeena sockeye, coho and Chinook salmon in 2017.
To help offset expected reductions in sockeye harvest, LBN Fisheries is proposing to harvest more Chinook and coho for food at the Babine River counting fence.
For more information about the 2017 Skeena sockeye management plan and how it may impact food fish for Lake Babine Nation, please contact Donna Macintyre at 250.692.0344.
View and download the Infographic PDF here.