Sockeye fishery opens in Fraser River

Sockeye fisheries opened this week on the Fraser River, sending commercial fishmen onto the water off the shores of Langley and out into the mouth of the river.

Boats were on the water from Monday through Wednesday in various areas.

At a meeting this week, the Fraser River Panel, which monitors the return of fish and sets openings, slightly downgraded its estimate of the number of sockeye coming back to spawn.

Fish stocks are managed in four groups: early Stuart, early summer, summer and late summer runs.

The first two runs have, for the most part, entered the river, with about 225,000 early Stuart sockeye and one million early summer sockeye estimated past Mission as of last Friday.

DFO is estimating about seven million summer run sockeye, with 1.8 million having already entered the river.

The condition of returning fish has been good, said the DFO.

Seining, trolling, and gillnetting were tall taking place and were open until fishers hit their quota. First Nations economic fisheries were possible this week or could be announced for the weekend, the panel said in a release.

The panel’s next meeting is to take place this Friday.

The late summer run, not estimated, is expected to form the majority of this sockeye run.

– with files from the Richmond News

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