Tag Archives: Coho Salmon

When fishing was an industry in Whaletown

A great many fisherfolk once worked out of Whaletown. The Cortes Island Museum’s list goes back to the 1930s, at which point there were 7 men and a woman. Three of them used rowboats. 

“There used to be a huge fleet rafted out, both six and seven abreast all along  both sides of the dock, in Whaletown.  In the last 10 years or so, there’s only been three or four boats in there, fishing. The main one  that I know of in the last little while is the ‘C-Fin,’ but he goes outside of the Vancouver Island area and fishes tuna. When he comes back he doesn’t sell it to a fisheries, he sells it from the dock, and the same with his prawns.  So he’s not using a middle man to sell his products, which I suppose is one of the few ways you could make a little bit of money now,“ said Lynne Jordan, former President of the Cortes Island Museum, in the latest instalment of her history of Whaletown.

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The keepers of Cheewaht: Restoring an ecosystem for generations to come

By Alexandra Mehl, Ha-Shilth-Sa, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Cheewaht Lake, BC – Off the rugged west coast of Vancouver Island, inland from the West Coast Trail, is a quiet and remote lake brimming with vibrant ecosystems. From trumpeter swans to black bears, the Cheewaht Lake watershed provides a home for dense and rare biodiversity.

The Cheewaht Lake watershed is on the traditional territory of Ditidaht First Nation, who, for thousands of years, managed the area from villages along the coast at the mouth of the Cheewaht River.

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No Chum in Basil Creek yet, but the outlook for salmon may be improving

It is November 26 and there are still no Chum Salmon in Basil Creek. Normally they would have returned a month ago, but there was a prolonged drought this year. While the water level has risen, there are still no fish.

“It’s getting to be late for Chum, but we’re seeing other populations come in late. We might see Chum return into the next few weeks, it’s very possible. This year is definitely characterized by a lot of weird conditions,” said Matthew Clarke, DFO’s Head for stock assessment in North Vancouver Island, from Black Creek to Cape Caution (which is actually on the Mainland). His area also includes Cortes and Quadra Islands.    

Continue reading No Chum in Basil Creek yet, but the outlook for salmon may be improving

Tensions rise as Coastal GasLink blasts a creek near a Wet’suwet’en camp

By Matt Simmons, The Narwhal, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

Less than one kilometre from a Wet’suwet’en camp and village site, where cabins, tiny homes and a feast hall provide space for ceremony, cultural practices and opportunities to reconnect with the land, is a vast muddy clearing, guarded by private security workers. 

Here, the path of the Coastal GasLink pipeline crosses Ts’elkay Kwe (Lamprey Creek), a tributary of Wedzin Kwa (Morice River). This work requires digging a trench right through the creek to bury the pipe under it.

Ts’elkay Kwe is a known spawning channel for steelhead trout trout and other species, including coho salmon, according to a 2007 land-use plan. But steelhead and salmon throughout the watershed are in decline, in part due to widespread clearcut logging and climate change.

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I swam with the salmon — they taught me about dignity and strength

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

After hiking along the Campbell River in unseasonably warm September sunshine, wrestling my middle-aged body into a wetsuit is no easy feat. 

But I’m determined to get a new angle on the iconic West Coast keystone species I so regularly write about as a reporter. I’m going swimming with salmon. 

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