Angling opportunities provided for some species of fish (e.g., trout, char, whitefish) may have negative impacts on holding or spawning salmon in the same river system. In many cases, angling for salmon is prohibited during times when angling for other species remains open. Anglers can
minimize disturbances or incidental hooking of salmon by adopting these simple voluntary measures:
Use fishing gear which will effectively avoid hooking salmon. For example, use fly fishing gear with a floating line and a dry fly. Sinking lines or spoons are not recommended as spawning salmon can be easily foul hooked. If the target species is smaller than the spawning salmon, use of a
light tippet is a good added measure.
If bait is allowed, avoid using bait types which aggressively attract salmon. Using bait such as worms, grasshoppers or other insects will effectively avoid salmon yet attract other species such as trout and whitefish.
Wading the River
Concentrate angling activity in areas of the river where salmon may be less prevalent. For example, avoid deep pools where salmon are holding prior to spawning. Also, avoid areas of shallow water where you observe concentrations of spawning salmon and their redds (gravel
“nests”). Salmon redds are generally between 1-2 square meters in size and may be recognised by the appearance of clean looking gravel which is loose and soft underfoot, as opposed to firmer and darker gravel nearby. When newly formed, redds will appear to be a depression with
a mound of gravel on the downstream side. Eggs will be buried in the mound of gravel and for several metres downstream. Walking on the redds may kill buried eggs, so please avoid them entirely. With the cooperation of knowledgeable anglers, it is often possible to maintain angling
opportunities which might otherwise be eliminated to protect vulnerable fish. Please adjust your angling techniques accordingly.
THE BASIC RULES ARE:
- Avoid entering the water downstream of another angler who is already fishing, unless invited to do so;
- Leave adequate room between the downstream angler and yourself but do not remain stationary unless no one is following you;
- After catching a fish, step out of the line and return to the head of the pool, or start of the line;
- If you are not sure about the local etiquette, avoid any problems by first inquiring about the procedures from the anglers already on the water.