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2012 Thompson and Chilcotin Steelhead Update #2

Posted on October 19th 2012, by Robert Bison, BC Fisheries Stock Assessment Biologist

From September 1 to date, 11 steelhead have been caught in the Albion test fisheries, 9 of which have been caught in the chum test fishery and 2 of which have been caught in the chinook test fishery (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Observed catches of steelhead in the Albion chum and chinook test fisheries to date, illustrated by the diamonds and squares, respectively. The lines illustrate the "average" pattern expected for the balance of the season, given the observed catches to date, the historical data on run timing and the historical data on the efficiency of the two gillnets.

The estimate of abundance remains unchanged from the last update. Presently, the test fishing data suggest that there is a 20% chance of exceeding the abundance reference point of 1250 Thompson and Chilcotin steelhead. This reference abundance is identified in the 2012 Integrated Fisheries Management Plan for the management of Fraser River commercial chum fisheries. For the Thompson watershed alone, there is presently a 25% chance of exceeding the abundance reference point of 850, the reference point used to open or close the catch-and-release sport fishery.

Sport fisheries on Interior Fraser steelhead were closed on October 1 and may open later in the month if the abundance forecast exceeds conservation limits.

Further updates will be provided as the season progresses.

Robert Bison
Fisheries Stock Assessment Biologist
Fish & Wildlife Branch

Additional Graphs

Figure 2. Trends in the estimated pre-fishery abundance (squares) and spawning abundance (diamonds) of Thompson River Steelhead.

Figure 3. Trends in the estimated pre-fishery abundance (squares) and spawning abundance (diamonds) of Chilcotin River Steelhead.

Figure 4. Trends in fishing mortality of Interior Fraser Steelhead.

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