Public meeting to discuss Cowichan River

A public meeting, organized by One Cowichan, is set to take place on Thursday, Oct. 25 to discuss the Cowichan River.

  • Oct. 24, 2012 12:00 p.m.

A public meeting, organized by One Cowichan, is set to take place on Thursday, Oct. 25 to discuss the Cowichan River.

The meeting is to take place at the Quw’utsun’ Cultural and Conference Centre in Duncan from 7 p.m.-9 p.m.

Cowichan Tribes chief Harvey Alphonse, the Hon. David Anderson, CVRD chair Rob Hutchins, and Catalyst general manager Robert Belanger will be in attendance.

“Using prediction data from indicator runs in various parts of the coast DFO was expecting about 5,000 chinooks total this year.  The numbers are now dropping off, as it is spawning time for chinooks and those that have not yet made it to their preferred spawning areas are not likely to make it there, even with today’s increased flows,” said Parker Jefferson of One Cowichan.

Total chinooks accounted for to date is approximately 3,344 including adults and jacks.  This number includes the counting fence, trap and truck, and brood stock numbers. There are still some fish spawning in the lower river, estimated to be a few hundred fish by swim count. About 1,000 fish are missing.

“We think that under current legislation, the provincial government has the authority, responsibility and importantly the financial means to manage our water resources. We are asking them to step up to the plate and take our a water licence on behalf of the migrating salmon in our Provincially and Federally designated Heritage River,” said Jefferson.

The CVRD is considering the water licence application and is on record supporting the rule band approach to weir management.