A cleanup in a local Victoria Stream revealed a low amount of fish in the water for no clear reason.
As 30 volunteers were in the ditches and roadsides that feed into Colquitz Creek, they picked up about half a ton of trash. However, they only spotted a coho salmon and a nest of salmon – which is a nest.
Peninsula Streams Society Environmental Support Technician Carmen Pavlov says the lack of fish is a concern and is also occurring in Millstream and Craigflower creeks.
“I haven’t seen too many. The coves I visited seem quite low in terms of fish stocks, which is a bit worrying,” Pavlov said. “I know Goldstream is running pretty strongly right now which is good to see, but the stream here in Colquitz is a bit down in fish action. We don’t know why this is happening, but we’re trying to get to the bottom of it. »
Peninsula Streams Society executive co-ordinator Ian Bruce said in 2015 there would have been around 50-60 fish in the same areas, with lots of nesting and digging activity.
He says there is concern because while numbers are low in the Colquitz, nearby rivers are experiencing peak years.
“Goldstream is having a banner year for coho, which is Saanich Inlet, as well as Shawnigan which is another stream in Saanich Inlet with coho,” Bruce said. “So why there are record years on that side and record lows here is a bit of a mystery.”
While Bruce says the situation is “very disappointing”, he says there is still hope and other ways to store the stream, including moving the eggs into the Colquitz.
However, Bruce says there’s not much they can do and what happens in the ocean is out of their control.
READ MORE: ‘Pesky’ otters continue to prey on Colquitz River salmon population
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