High water damages Woodjam Creek spawning beds

The Horsefly Round Table is extremely concerned that high flow of runoff is adversely affecting salmon spawning beds in the Horsefly area.

The first item on the agenda for the last Horsefly River Roundtable meeting was a discussion on fisheries with Gordon Sterritt, head of the Northern Shuswap Tribal Council (NSTC).

Sterritt outlined the Northern Shuswap Tribal Council’s efforts to bring commercial fisheries to the Cariboo Interior and, in particular, within the traditional territory of the Northern Secwepemc te Qelmucw.

In other business June 21, the round table asked Area F director Joan Sorely to take a message to the Cariboo Regional District’s timber supply meeting.

The roundtable is extremely concerned with the high flow of runoff due to the clear cuts because of the pine beetle.

There is a $70,000 repair job being done to the Woodjam Creek which has been seriously compromised due to the high water flow in heavy rains and spring floods, and with more logging planned in the watershed, it will only get worse before it gets any better. In other roundtable business June 21 our co-ordinator for the salmon festival will once again be Brandi Ranger.

There will also be Gyotaku demonstrations once again, if we have any fish to use.

Judy Hillaby will once again be demonstrating the biology of fish through dissecting fish for the public.

We need five more vendors, so if you want to join us on Labor Day weekend for our festival as a vendor please contact Ranger at brandiwyne26@hotmail.com.

Tables cost a nominal fee of $10.

The idea of using old conveyor belts from the mining industry for upgrading our Salmon Walk has been well received, so we will be proceeding with this method of long-term maintenance.

There is no funding for the cottonwood tree pruning, so the round table will be writing a letter to Department of Fisheries and Oceans, so we have it on record.

After using every argument I could introduce, I finally had to concede there will not be any fish allowed in the channel this year, and this subject brought up the Salmon Egg Race scheduled for the festival day.

If the water is opened up, salmon may enter the spawning channel and be trapped when the water is shut off.

Judy Hillaby will be working with this unforeseen issue, and will report next meeting.

The round table received $1,000 from BC Hydro and $500 from Tracy Bond as donations toward our festival costs.

There are free fencing materials available through DFO for people who need to fence off cattle from rivers and streams on their property.

Phone Roy Argue at 250-305-3015 for information.

At our next meeting we hope to have Rick Brundridge give a report on the ongoing bass problem in the Beaver lakes, as well as go over the prescription proposals for the Woodjam Creek from Richard Case and Steve Hocquard.


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