Published on Friday, April 21st, 2017
Fisheries and Oceans Canada has released a couple of fishery notices on rockfish and lingcod regulations for this season.
The first one summarizes the daily quota for rockfish.
Second notice summarizes the quotas for lingcod in Areas 12, 13 to 19, 20 and 29.
Please note that Areas 28 and 29 (except subarea 29-5) remain closed for lingcod and rockfish fishing (this includes catching and releasing) because abundance is simply not high enough for any harvest.
Third notice summarizes the quotas for lingcod in all other Areas.
Post-release mortality is often quite high when it comes to rockfish due to the expansion of their air bladder as they are reeled in from the deep. This is a concern to fishery managers and the recreational fishing sector is developing ways to significantly reduce this impact.
One is to selectively target species, like what we did in our recent video with Murphy Sportfishing by using large swimbaits for lingcod to avoid rockfish.
Another way is to stop fishing once anglers reach their quotas so no fish are unnecessarily killed by catching and releasing them.
The third way, which may have the biggest impact, is the use of a release device which brings the fish down to a selected depth before it is being released. The fish is hooked onto the device, which is then lowered into the deep by using a Scotty Fishing Products’ downrigger and the device will released the fish based on water pressure. This depressurize the fish’s air bladder gradually as the depth increases, therefore bringing the fish back to its habitat. Early testings have shown excellent results with underwater video footage of fish swimming away once being released. It is a practice that will not only sustain the resource but also keep fisheries open in the future. We will be showing you how the device works later on this year when we start filming on the WCVI.