April 9, 2019
Ottawa, ON – Recreational fishing is an important part of British Columbia’s culture, economy and identity. Sport fishing is also part of the broader recreation and tourism sectors and is a major contributor to local economies. Collecting reliable and timely catch data also helps keep Canada’s fisheries sustainable.
That is why the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson announced today that recreational harvesters who catch and retain lingcod or chinook salmon will soon be able to record their catch electronically. This gives harvesters more flexibility when recording catches of lingcod or chinook salmon and brings the regulations in line with current technology. Harvesters will be able to report catches electronically to DFO next season.
Stronger catch reporting and fisheries monitoring is a national priority for Fisheries and Oceans Canada. We are committed to developing and deploying fisheries management tools that move us away from paper-based reporting towards a modern system that will help ensure continued access to the resource for future generations.
“Collecting reliable and timely catch data that is accessible helps keep Canada’s fisheries sustainable. In today’s world, technology and innovation are essential elements in managing our fisheries resources. By making this change we are helping to support the conservation and sustainable use of British Columbia’s fish stocks. We are opening the door to leveraging technology so that recreational harvesters can submit their data in real-time from anywhere.”
The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson
Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard
Amendments to section 22 of the British Columbia Sport Fishing Regulations were published in the Canada Gazette, Part II on April 3, 2019. As a result, harvesters will soon be able to record their catch permanently in an approved electronic database instead of on a paper licence.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada is committed to the delivery and accessibility of information in formats that are client-focused, technology-enabled, and financially sustainable.
With electronic catch data, DFO can receive data more quickly and in a more accessible format that is more complete and accurate than with paper-based reporting.
DFO requires that licence holders for tidal waters sport fishing provide information on their recreational fishing activity and catch to DFO representatives when requested.
Recreational harvesters who catch and retain halibut, lingcod or chinook salmon will soon be able to record their catch electronically.
Permanently recording halibut catch on a fishers licence continues to be a requirement under the conditions of licence for halibut. Licence conditions will be adjusted to permit permanent electronic reporting for halibut catch, and harvesters will be notified when that happens.
British Columbia’s free tidal waters (saltwater) sport fishing app, was launched in 2017 by the Sport Fishing Institute of BC in partnership with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and supported by the Pacific Salmon Foundation.