The Nechako River may lose local sturgeon to extinction

A grim future lies ahead for the local sturgeon population if current initiatives continue to be at a stand still.

  • Aug. 3, 2012 7:00 p.m.

Christina Millington

Omineca Express

A grim future lies ahead for the local sturgeon population if current initiatives continue to be at a stand still.

The proposed $3.2 million white sturgeon hatchery project is yet to see the light of day as federal priorities seem to be elsewhere.

“We’re so close,” says Brian Frenkel, Avison Management Services director and chairman of the community working group on the hatchery project.

Studies indicate that in the last 50 years the Nechako white sturgeon population has dropped from what some scientists believe was a minimum of 5000 fish to less than 600.

The Nechako White Sturgeon Initiative (NWSI) was put in place to put together a recovery plan, which was split into two groups, technical working group and the community working group.

“The groups worked very hard to get the sturgeon on the endangered species list,” said Frenkel. “We fought hard to get the species on the list. So now it is my frustration that the federal government is not helping with going forward.”

Frenkel and the community of Vanderhoof wanted to “get behind” saving the species.

“The species have been listed as imperial,” he said. “It has been a passion of everyone that has been involved to do the right thing.”

The provincial government has donated $1,500,000 to the project, the land for the sturgeon facilities have been donated on behalf of Vanderhoof, however, the project still requires a partner to come on board to have enough funding to go forward with the construction of the white sturgeon hatchery.

According to Frenkel research is still required to determine what needs to be done to keep the species diverse so that researchers can keep creating and keeping the species from becoming extinct.

“The bottom line is that we have to start doing this or the species will go extinct,” said Frenkel.

Sturgeon require gravel like surfaces to spawn so that the larvae can find its way between gravel stones where they can successfully mature and stay hidden from natural predators.

“Survivability of sturgeon is unknown at this time,” said Frenkel. “The facility will allow sturgeon to mature to the point that they are big enough to fend off predators, therefore will allow the survival rate to increase.”

Frenkel feels that the federal government and business groups need to step in and help save the species.

“This whole area is engaged in saving this species,” he said. “We have been working on this project for four years.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

UPDATED: Evacuation alert issued due to Dog Creek Trail Wildfire

UPDATED: The Dog Creek wildfire has grown substantially over the past two… Continue reading

Locals converge for Cannabis Community Consultation meeting

Public feedback taken into account as DOV moves forward

Holi Festival of Colours celebrated in Vanderhoof

Last weekend, around 20 Vanderhoof residents took part in Holi, a Hindu… Continue reading

College of New Caledonia announces early childhood educator training

Vanderhoof students may benefit from the program expansion

Vulnerable B.C. communities receive funds for structural flood mitigation

Communities throughout British Columbia that have been partial to flood risks in… Continue reading

BC Games: Day 1 comes to an end

Medals have already been handed out following one day of competition in the 2018 BC Summer Games

BC Wildfire update on Okanagan blazes

Watch the media briefing on the current fire situation in the Okanagan.

UPDATED: Evacuation alert issued due to Dog Creek Trail Wildfire

UPDATED: The Dog Creek wildfire has grown substantially over the past two… Continue reading

RCMP help to save goats from wildfire

The fast-approaching wildfire, sparked Thursday, forced the evacuation of five homes

VIDEO: Near drowning captured on popular B.C. river

Search and Rescue manager says the popular pastime of floating in the summer is inherently dangerous

Crosswalk vandalism leaves black mark for Cowichan as B.C. Games begin

Rainbow crosswalk defaced just days after being painted

Photo gallery: BC Games Day 1

A brief look at action from the 2018 BC Summer Games in the Cowichan Valley

UPDATED: Anti-pipeline campers digging in as eviction deadline expires

The City of Burnaby had ordered the Kinder Morgan pipeline protesters out for violating bylaws

Trump was taped talking of paying Playboy model: AP source

Source says former personal lawyer Michael Cohen secretly recorded discussion prior to 2016 election

Most Read