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The New Brunswick Salmon Council (NBSC) is a non-profit, volunteer-based organization dedicated to the protection and conservation of wild Atlantic salmon and supporting the restoration and enhancement of Atlantic salmon and their habitats on all their native watersheds in New Brunswick.

INTRODUCING THE NEW BRUNSWICK SALMON COUNCIL’S BRYANT FREEMAM MEMORIAL FUND

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Late in 2021, following a period of declining heath, Bryant Freeman, one of New Brunswick’s most knowledgeable and caring fly fishing and fly-tying personalities passed away.  Bryant was a consummate gentleman.  For many years he was the proprietor of Eskape Anglers in Riverview, where he tied flies, and personally prepared his fly-tying fur, feathers, hair, and other materials.

Pertaining to his fly fishing passion, he was a creator of thoughtfully prepared fly patterns and as well, was intimately knowledgeable about classic legacy patterns, which he tied beautifully.  He was a firm believer in conservation and environmental values and practices.  Bryant supported many volunteer organizations throughout his career, and offered his knowledge freely to New Brunswick’s fly tyers and those from away.

In his honour, the New Brunswick Salmon Council has created a memorial fund in his name, a fund which will be dedicated to salmon conservation initiatives in our Province.  The NB Salmon Council can issue a tax receipt for your donation. Donation cards are available by contacting the Council on this website, from several Council Directors, and will, in time, be available at funeral homes around NB.  Donors can also copy the images from this document, print them, and use them as their donation cards.

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NB Salmon Council in Working Group negotiating allowable recreational fisheries harvest details for Atlantic salmon at various abundance levels on the Northwest/Little Southwest and Southwest Miramichi systems.  This group, which also includes fellow salmon conservation organizations, First Nations representatives, provincial representatives and DFO personnel, is part of a DFO initiative to have salmon harvests comply with the so-called “Precautionary Approach” (PA).  An attempt is being made to implement the PA on all Canada’s harvested fish stocks.  The NBSC used the following first principles in guiding our negotiations in the Working Group.

Link to the document available here

 


 

Fix uncertainty on Miramichi Lake bass eradication

Another legal challenge has been launched against a plan by the Working Group on Smallmouth Bass Eradication to use rotenone in a part of the Miramichi watershed to address the invasive fish species.

A plan to use rotenone to eliminate smallmouth bass in part of the Miramichi River watershed has stalled yet again. The project would use rotenone, a piscicide, to kill the aquatic species in a section of the Miramichi that has been invaded by the bass, which pose a threat, potentially an existential one, to salmon in that section of the waterway.

The introduction of bass is believed to date back to 2008, when it’s thought they were established in Miramichi Lake. Since then, other avenues of containment and elimination haven’t been enough. Electrofishing and standard angling did not prevent the spread of the smallmouth. A barrier didn’t stop the bass from entering the Southwest Miramichi River in 2019.

The plan was conceived by a working group as a further – and yes, more forceful – way to contain the smallmouth and eliminate them. The piscicide would be neutralized downstream and much care taken to ensure that native species can repopulate the sections of waterway to be treated. The idea was developed by many local stakeholders and reflects a lengthy consultation process, including with Indigenous communities. It was approved by Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

In that light, it’s no longer acceptable that last-minute court challenges continue to stall the project. While one request for an injunction was recently withdrawn, another is now in motion.

Meanwhile, the bass continue their conquest. Continuing to oppose the plan flies in the face of the wishes of many local stakeholders and also fails to treat the situation with the urgency it deserves. Changing climate patterns mean invasive species are becoming an increasing threat to our ecosystems, and we rarely have the luxury of time, especially not two consecutive seasons of legal limbo.

The gridlock shows there is a problem with our system, in which opposition to a soundly conceived project can stall it indefinitely.

It’s time for the legal uncertainty to be cleared up once and for all, with speed. The plan must either proceed, or be scrapped and a suitable alternative plan arranged to keep smallmouth bass from further reducing fragile salmon stocks in the Miramichi watershed, a region that depends on them.

Unfortunately, there are no perfect options or even good options for the elimination of many invasive species. But the more time that passes with little or no action, the more destruction those species can wreak. We believe it’s time for the project to proceed.

Copied with permission from https://www.asf.ca/news-and-magazine/salmon-news/fix-uncertainty-bass