Fisheries and Land Resources
August 25, 2017

Minister Byrne Calls on Fisheries and Oceans Canada to Maintain Federal Fisheries Enforcement Resources

The Honourable Gerry Byrne, Minister of Fisheries and Land Resources, has formally requested that the Government of Canada revisit its decision to end the 2017 federal Fishery Guardian Program in September, before the end of the salmon angling season in October.

Minister Byrne has called upon Fisheries and Oceans Canada to allocate the necessary financial resources to extend the duration of its river guardians program for a minimum of an additional 10 weeks, ensuring a federal enforcement presence on provincial rivers and estuaries during the full period that salmon and grilse are either migrating or in the rivers.

From a provincial perspective, the Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Division received 157 fishing-related complaints of illegal activity and issued 181 fishing-related charges in 2016. These charges included illegal netting, jigging, fishing during closed time, illegal possession and sale and other offences.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada closed all island rivers to retention on August 6, 2017.

“The Government of Canada has closed salmon rivers on the island for retention and is ending its 2017 seasonal enforcement program prematurely, while its own Special Report on Wild Atlantic Salmon in Eastern Canada recommends increased resources for more accurate stock assessments and enforcement. By extending its river guardians program, Fisheries and Oceans Canada would achieve more than just a partial recreational fishery enforcement program by transforming it into a more effective resource conservation and protection program. We encourage the Government of Canada to match our commitment to enforcement and conservation of this valuable resource.”
Honourable Gerry Byrne
Minister of Fisheries and Land Resources

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Learn more
August 25, 2017 letter to Government of Canada: PDF Icon

Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Special Report on Wild Atlantic Salmon in Eastern Canada: PDF Icon 

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Media contact
Rod Drover
Fisheries and Land Resources
709-729-3783, 730-4607


2017 08 25                                                    12:50 p.m.