If independent at-sea observers find suitable fish, Nootka/Esperanza will open to herring fishery

Published on March 8, 2015

From Don Hall, NTC Fisheries Program Manager:

Late last night DFO sent an email that at least two commercial seine vessels were headed to Nootka/Esperanza to look for herring to harvest.  (A fishery being planned for Barkley Sound this morning was cancelled due to poor quality fish.)

Ray Williams (Yuquot resident) phoned Roger Dunlop early this morning (Saturday).  Several commercial seine vessels came into Friendly Cove in the middle of the night.  Those are like the same vessels that were in Barkley Sound yesterday.

The email below from DFO states that DFO has designated two vessels (the Ocean Marauder and Prosperity) as “test vessels”.  DFO has authorized these vessels to do “test sets” to determine if any herring that they sound are suitable for commercial harvest.  Both vessels are supposed to have an independent at-sea observer on board.  If the vessels find suitable fish then DFO will have to authorize an opening with boundaries, times, etc. (like DFO did yesterday for Barkley Sound, but later cancelled).

Roger is in contact with representatives from MMFN, Nuchatlaht and Ehattesaht.