The Big Qualicum River steelhead fishery was surveyed from 1976-77 to 1980-81 to monitor angler use and success and to assess the status of wild and hatchery steelhead stocks. Using a voluntary questionnaire with intermittent reinforcement by MOE personnel, angler effort, catch and catch rates peaked in 1977-78 but declined each year thereafter. This was partially explained by the change to catch-and-release regulations for wild steelhead, but estimated stock sizes also showed a similar trend. Redd counts peaked in 1977-78 but also declined during each of the three subsequent years. Exploitation of hatchery steelhead averaged an estimated 45%. Similar exploitation of wild steelhead dropped abruptly after the change to catch-and-release regulations. A cursory examination of hatchery steelhead survival found no apparent relationship between smolt-to-adult survival and the mean size of released smolts. However, data were too incomplete to be conclusive.
Hooton, R.S., Lewynsky, V.A.. 1985. Big Qualicum River Steelhead Fishery Investigations 1976 to 1981. Ministry of Environment. Fisheries Management Report. 85
Topic: Fish and Fish Habitats
Keywords: Big Qualicum River, steelhead, fishery, sport, angler, effort, success, hatchery, regulations, management, survival, trends, stocks
Scientific Name: Oncorhynchus mykiss
English Name: Rainbow Trout
Other Identifier: FMR85
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