Fishery Notice

ABORIGINAL - General Information
COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Gill Net
COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Seine
COMMERCIAL - Salmon: Troll
FN0864-Salmon - Fraser River Sockeye Update - Areas 11 to 29 - August 16, 2016

The Fraser River Panel met Tuesday, August 16th, 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.	

Fraser River gill net test fishery catches have continued to fluctuate lately 
with daily Mission passage estimates ranging from 13,400 to 22,300. The average 
annual diversion rate estimate through Johnstone Strait to date is 50% compared 
to the pre-season forecast of 75%.

In-river DNA samples from the Cottonwood test fishery on August 10-13  had 7% 
Early Summer,  77% Summer and 16% Late run stocks while the Whonnock test 
fishery had stock proportions of 5% Early Summer, 80% Summer and 15% Late run 
stocks on August 13-14. Age proportions continue to contain a higher proportion 
of 5 year olds than expected.

During the Panel meeting today there were no changes made to the run size for 
Early Summer, Summer or Late run sockeye. The estimated escapement of Early 
Summer, Summer and Late run sockeye past Mission through August 15th is 
221,200, 350,200 and 31,200 fish respectively.

On August 15th the Fraser River water discharge at Hope was 2,925 cms, which is 
approximately 14% lower than average for this date. The temperature of the 
Fraser River at Qualark Creek on August 15th was 20.6°C, which is 2.6°C higher 
than average for this date. The water temperature is forecast to increase to 
21.1°C by August 21st.

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.

FSC fisheries in the marine area are currently closed to the retention of 
sockeye in areas where Fraser sockeye are present. FSC fisheries in the lower 
and mid-Fraser River are currently closed and terminal fisheries in the upper 
Fraser tributaries will be closing 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 sockeye.

The third in-season update on the escapement of Fraser sockeye was released on 
August 11th.  Early Stuart sockeye are approaching the peak of spawning in 
several tributaries. Fish condition appears to be relatively good although some 
pre-spawn mortality has been observed. At Scotch Creek the counting fence has 
been installed but no fish have entered the system at this time. Some fish have 
been observed off the mouth of Scotch Creek in Shuswap Lake. The Didson program 
in the Chilliwack system began on July 20th with an estimated 30,520 sockeye 
past the sonar as of August 10th. The Chilko River Didson program began on 
August 5th and fish migration is in the early stages at this time. A total of 
107 sockeye have been estimated past the sonar site as of August 9th. Water 
temperatures in the above systems are favorable at this time. The Sweltzer 
Creek counting fence in the Cultus Lake system began operations on July 11th 
and to date 52 sockeye have been observed. The water temperature in Sweltzer 
Creek is 20°C. The next escapement update will be on Thursday, August 18th.

The next in-season meeting of the Fraser River Panel is scheduled to occur on 
Friday, August 19th, 2016.


Jennifer Nener 604-666-0789

Fisheries & Oceans Operations Center - FN0864
Sent August 16, 2016 at 1617