Fishery Notice

ABORIGINAL - General Information
COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Gill Net
COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Seine
COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Troll
FN0833-Salmon - Fraser River Sockeye Update - Areas 11 to 29 - August 9, 2016

The Fraser River Panel met Tuesday, August 9th, to receive an update on the 
migration of the Fraser sockeye runs to date and to review the status of 
migration conditions in the Fraser River watershed.	

Gill net and purse seine test fish catches in the marine areas have continued 
to be poor for the past several days suggesting a lower than expected flow of 
fish through the marine approach areas. The Area 12 gill net test fishery is 
scheduled to conclude on August 10th and the seine test boats in both Areas 12 
and 20 on August 12th. Fraser River gill net test fishery catches have 
continued to fluctuate lately with daily Mission passages estimates ranging 
from 17,000 to 28,000. The current 5-day diversion rate through Johnstone 
Strait has increased to 61% which remains below the pre-season forecast of 75%.

DNA analysis of samples taken in the most recent marine test fisheries show 
sockeye stock compositions in Area 20 of 7% Early Summer, 76% Summer and 17% 
Late run stocks. In Johnstone Strait the most recent seine test fishery DNA 
samples indicate a stock composition of 8% Early Summer, 78% Summer and 14% 
Late run stocks. In-river DNA samples from the Cottonwood test fishery on 
August 5-6  had 14% Early Summer,  76% Summer and 10% Late run stocks while the 
Whonnock test fishery had stock proportions of 8% Early Summer, 85% Summer and 
7% Late run stocks on August 4-5. Age proportions continue to contain a higher 
proportion of 5 year olds than expected.

During the Panel meeting today the run size for Early Summer run sockeye was 
reduced to 250,000 with a 50% run timing of July 21st in Area 20. The estimated 
escapement past Mission of Early Summer run stocks as of August 8th is 211,800 

Summer run stocks continue to track well below the 50% probability forecast of 
1,677,000. During the Panel call today the run size was further reduced to a 
run size of 700,000 fish with no change in the Area 20 timing date of August 
3rd. The estimated escapement of Summer run sockeye past Mission through August 
8th is 262,500 fish.

The Birkenhead component of the Late run sockeye appear to be tracking close to 
the 50% probability forecast of 95,000 but no changes were made to the run size 
at the Panel meeting today.  The estimated escapement of Late run sockeye past 
Mission through August 8th is 15,600 fish.

On August 8th the Fraser River water discharge at Hope was 2,881 cms, which is 
approximately 24% lower than average for this date. The temperature of the 
Fraser River at Qualark Creek on August 8th was 19.1°C, which is 1.0°C higher 
than average for this date. The water temperature is forecast to remain 
relatively unchanged at 19.0°C by August 14th.

For pre-season planning purposes the Fraser Panel has adopted management 
adjustments for Early Summer and Summer sockeye that reflect the forecast 
conditions based on the May to June information. Management adjustments are 
additional fish that are removed from identified harvest levels and allowed to 
escape upstream in an attempt to assist in achievement of identified escapement 
objectives for the different run timing groups. In-season information over the 
coming weeks will help to inform future decisions on management adjustments for 
the Early Summer and Summer management groups while the Early Stuart and Late 
run management groups will be managed based on the respective Low Abundance 
Exploitation Rate (LAER) for each group (10% for Early Stuart and 20% for 
Lates). There will be no in-season estimates of management adjustment for Early 
Stuart and Late run sockeye in 2016 as the forecast returns are very low across 
the entire forecast range and it is anticipated they will be managed to the 
LAER, with the expected outcome of a spawning escapement well below goal. 
During the Panel call today there were no changes made to the management 
adjustments for Early Summer and Summer run sockeye.

With the above adopted run sizes, all four run timing groups of Fraser Sockeye 
are in a low abundance exploitation rate (LAER) scenario. As such FSC fisheries 
directed on Fraser sockeye in both the marine areas and the lower Fraser River 
will be closed immediately and terminal fisheries in the upper Fraser 
tributaries that have only been open for a short period of time will close in 
an orderly fashion. Fishers in marine approach areas as well as the Fraser 
River are requested to check for any restrictions in their local area. There 
will be no commercial or recreational sockeye fisheries in 2016 on Fraser 

The second in-season update on the escapement of Fraser sockeye was released on 
August 4th.  Early Stuart sockeye are in the early stages of spawning in 
several tributaries and appear to be in good condition. The Didson program in 
the Chilliwack system began on July 20th with an estimated 16,956 sockeye past 
the sonar as of August 3rd. Water temperatures are favorable at this time. The 
Sweltzer Creek counting fence in the Cultus Lake system began operations on 
July 11th and to date 3 fish have been observed. The water temperature in 
Sweltzer Creek is 21°C. The next escapement update will be on Thursday, August 

The next in-season meeting of the Fraser River Panel is scheduled to occur on 
Friday, August 12th, 2016.


Jennifer Nener 604-666-0789

Fisheries & Oceans Operations Center - FN0833
Sent August 9, 2016 at 1503