$8,600 boost for salmon project

The Pacific Salmon Foundation will provide more than $8,600 to help a huge Pacific salmon project in Lake Cowichan.

The Pacific Salmon Foundation will provide more than $8,600 to help a huge Pacific salmon project in Lake Cowichan.

The total value of the project including volunteer time and community fundraising is over $270,000.

The foundation’s Community Salmon Program supports habitat stewardship, Pacific salmon enhancement and watershed education, and is funded primarily from sales of the federal government’s Salmon Conservation Stamp.

The project is run by Cowichan Tribes as part of their Cowichan Chinook Early Run Abundance Assessment project.

Pacific Salmon Foundation president and CEO Dr. Brian Riddell is delighted with the announcement.

“We are pleased to support this project because it will measure the genetic fitness of naturally and hatchery-produced Chinook salmon, the results of which will help inform fisheries management in the Strait of Georgia.”

The CSP supports community groups, volunteers and First Nations across the province.

All give countless hours each year to monitor watersheds, develop and implement habitat rehabilitation projects, and educate communities about the conservation and protection of salmon.

The majority of funds for the CSP were generated through sales of the federal Salmon Conservation Stamp.

The stamp must be purchased annually by anglers if they wish to keep Pacific salmon caught in saltwater off Canada’s West Coast. Currently all proceeds from the $6 dollar stamp are returned to British Columbia through the Foundation, generating about $1 million for community grants annually.

In addition to funds generated from the sales of the federal salmon stamp, the grants are made possible by fundraising dinners, auctions and donations from individuals, other foundations and businesses.

“The Community Salmon Program captures the essence of what we are trying to do at the foundation,” Riddell said. “Government, business, First Nations and volunteers all working together: that is the best way to ensure the future of wild Pacific salmon.”

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