The idea underlying Salmon Strongholds is to ensure thriving fish habitat conditions where it is most crucial to maintain the abundance, productivity and diversity of wild Pacific salmon species and populations. It emphasizes the prevention of problems and reduction of threats to wild salmon in geographical areas of particular importance, complementing the emphasis in recent years on crisis management of salmon stocks.
The extent to which fish habitats are impacted by human activities at the landscape level is now being assessed and studied by fisheries scientists around the world. While there have been extensive efforts to protect and restore fish habitats in recent decades, traditional approaches have focused almost exclusively on in-stream and riparian areas. More recent work has begun to incorporate a broader, landscape perspective when developing strategies and policies aimed at protecting fisheries values.
For many generations in western Canada, five species of Pacific salmon have provided a defining role to native and non-native peoples. As a reflection of this cultural importance, there has been a long-standing tradition of communities and governments taking action to help salmon cope with both natural and human pressures on their survival.
Recently, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has clearly indicated that humans, by burning fossil fuels and changing the landscape, are responsible for unnatural changes in the world’s climate. In turn, hese changes are leading to significant effects on our continents, in our oceans, and in freshwater streams and lakes.
This report is in support of strategy 2 of the Wild Pacific Salmon Policy (WSP). This report recommends specific indicators that can be utilized to describe habitat status. It makes further recommendations including that of undertaking pilot implementation to learn as we go.
Agriculture operations in the eastern Fraser Valley have resulted in substantial reductions in stream, wetland and riparian areas. The current intensification of agriculture operations continues to reduce aquatic habitat and put the area’s fisheries values at risk. Action is needed to conserve remaining aquatic habitat. The report gives credit to government agencies for initiating environmental farm plans.
This report summarizes what the Council heard during public meetings, one-on-one meetings with stakeholders and via written submissions related to the subject of salmon hatcheries. British Columbians believe that salmon hatcheries and enhancement activities are needed to protect wild salmon stocks. Many also believe that negative impacts of enhancement on wild salmon have either been fixed or are wrong, misguided or irrelevant and that, given habitat loss and excessive fishing, enhancement is the only thing actually working to protect wild salmon.
There has been an upsurge of community and public involvement in the protection and rehabilitation of British Columbia.
Areas 6-10 of British Columbia's Central Coast, provides a good measure of the current state of domestic stocks and their management.