As of Friday, angling is suspended in the classified waters section of the Horsefly River due to warming water temperatures.
Effective July 13 through Aug. 31, 2015, all angling in the Horsefly River from the falls located at kilometre 55 downstream to Quesnel Lake is prohibited. The angling closure is located in Wildlife Management Unit 5-2.
The closure has been put in place to protect fish stocks at a time when they are vulnerable due to high water temperatures. The closure is supported by the Horsefly River Angling Management Plan, which calls for the river to be closed for conservation when temperatures exceed 18 degrees Celsius.
Evidence shows that water temperatures over 18 degrees results in high catch-and-release mortality rates – sometimes as high as 40 per cent.
On July 3, 2015, a similar angling closure order was put in place for southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. B.C. government fisheries biologists are monitoring approximately 60 other key angling streams throughout the province, and if conditions warrant, additional closures are possible.
Angling closures are enabled through the British Columbia Sport Fishing Regulations of the federal Fisheries Act.
The Horsefly River was closed due to high water temperatures three times during the last 10 years (2006, 2009 and 2010).