Freshwater Fisheries in Western Canada: Multiple Challenges Lead to Opportunities and Successes

Monday, August 18, 2014: 4:20 PM
205B (Centre des congrès de Québec // Québec City Convention Centre)
Brett T. van Poorten , British Columbia Ministry of Environment, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Theresa Godin , Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC
Eric Parkinson , Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
John R. Post , Biological Sciences, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada
David Close , Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia
Michael Sullivan , Alberta Sustainable Resource Development
Fisheries in western Canada are always changing, both due to the growth (and decline) and diversification of the angling community and through dynamically fluctuating natural and introduced fish populations. Some fisheries have been severely depressed due to overcrowding, while others have become world class fisheries. Overall, despite a great number of natural fishing opportunities, there are an equal number of challenges that have had to be overcome: low productivity lakes; low species diversity; aquatic invasive species; increasing urbanization; creation of hydroelectric reservoirs; etc. This has led to a great need to better understand the natural and social systems in which we operate, leading to a wide variety of research opportunities. Generally, this research has greatly shaped the way fisheries are managed and created opportunities in otherwise depressing situations. We will broadly discuss some of these challenges, and opportunities from across western Canada and discuss ongoing and impending issues that will reshape our fisheries well into the future.