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Environmental group releases tips for salmon viewing this season

6.8 million sockeye salmon have returned on the Fraser River this year
The Alouette River Management Society encourages spectators to be respectful of salmon when viewing them. (ARMS/Special to The News)

At the height of the salmon migration and spawning season, which often draws hundreds of thousands of spectators across B.C., the Alouette River Management Society (ARMS) has come out with a list of tips to help people enjoy the majesty of the fish without disrupting or harming the wildlife.

With more than 6.8 million sockeye salmon returning on the Fraser River this year, according to the Pacific Salmon Commission, there is going to be a significant number of salmon eggs along stream beds. That’s why ARMS is recommending that spectators stay out of the streams when viewing the salmon.

RELATED: Welcome the Return of the Salmon in Maple Ridge on Sunday

“Stomp on the eggs and you can kill the next generation of fish,” said ARMS in a Facebook post.

They also provided a tip specifically for anyone who plans to bring their dog with them on salmon viewings.

“Keep dogs on a leash and out of the water during spawning season.”

However, ARMS recommends that viewers exercise this abundance of caution, regardless of whether or not they have pets or small children with them.

“Imagine that during the migration, the river has a ‘do not disturb’ sign on it. Salmon can see you. Approach quietly and do not step into the river or throw rocks or sticks into the water.”

Despite initial concerns over the effects of the drought on the salmon population, ARMS reports that the salmon numbers are improving now.

“Salmon are coming back in much higher numbers now that we have had some rain,” said ARMS communications and engagement manager Sophie Sparrow. “The Allco fish fence and trap operations have been full of Chum and Coho salmon, and we have even seen quite a few Chinook return as well, which has been fantastic to see. The returning adult spawners all appear to be in good shape physically.”

READ MORE: Maple Ridge salmon groups worry drought will hurt spawning

Popular B.C. locations to view salmon migration and spawning include:

• Goldstream Provincial Park, Victoria

• Stamp River Provincial Park, Port Alberni

• Quinsam River Hatchery, Campbell River

• Capilano River Hatchery, North Vancouver

• Seymour Hatchery, North Vancouver

• Nelson Creek, West Vancouver

• Little Campbell Hatchery, Surrey

• Tynehead Hatchery, Surrey

• Chantrell Creek, Surrey

• Hoy Creek Hatchery, Coquitlam

• Oxbow Side Channel, Coquitlam

• Hockaday Park, Coquitlam

• Hyde Creek Nature Reserve, Port Coquitlam

• Bell Irving Hatchery, Maple Ridge

• Allco Park, Maple Ridge

• Chilliwack River Hatchery, Chilliwack

• Sq’ewqéyl First Nation Community Fish Hatchery, Chilliwack

• Tenderfoot Creek Hatchery, Brackendale

• Inlet Park and Noons Creek Hatchery, Port Moody

• Garry Point Park, Richmond

• Ladner Harbour Park, Delta

• Westminster Quay, New Westminster

• Mamquam Spawning Channel, Squamish

• Yorkson Creek, Langley Township

• Williams Park, Langley

• Stoney Creek, Burnaby

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Brandon Tucker

About the Author: Brandon Tucker

I have been a journalist since 2013, with much of my career spent covering sports and entertainment stories in Alberta.
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