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Archived - Minister Shea Announces the Creation of a Ministerial Advisory Committee on Atlantic Salmon

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Recreational Fisheries Conservation Partnerships Program Funding to Benefit Atlantic Salmon Habitat in the Miramichi

December 18, 2014 - Miramichi, New Brunswick

Today, the Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, along with Tilly O’Neill-Gordon, Member of Parliament for Miramichi, announced the creation of a new Ministerial Advisory Committee on Atlantic salmon to help determine the course of action to address low returns of Atlantic salmon on the East coast. 

The committee will include key stakeholders and will meet on at least four occasions between February 2015 and June 2015. There will also be opportunities for written submissions to the advisory committee.
The committee, supported by officials from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, will focus discussions on the following aspects:

  • Conservation and enforcement measures
  • Predation
  • Strategy to address international, unsustainable fishing
  • Focused areas for advancing science

Funding was also announced today to enhance critically-important Atlantic Salmon thermal-refuge habitat in the Miramichi River system through the Recreational Fisheries Conservation Partnerships Program (RFCPP). As such, the Miramichi Salmon Association will receive up to $33,034 to support the conservation of fish habitat in Miramichi. The project aims for the long-term habitat enhancement of two important cold-water pools, specifically the one at the confluence of Otter Brook and the Little Southwest Miramichi River, and the one at the confluence of Indiantown Brook and the main Southwest Miramichi River.

Quick Facts

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada scientists are actively monitoring Atlantic salmon populations in key index rivers of Eastern Canada, working closely with stakeholder groups to undertake rigorous counts of salmon returns in rivers.
  • Management measures for recreational fisheries are based on the most up-to-date science advice, which guides seasons and catch levels for management across Atlantic Canada and Quebec. 
  • Since its inception in 2013, the RFCPP has funded 33 projects in New Brunswick, 32 of which benefitted the conservation of Atlantic salmon.
  • Since the RFCPP’s creation, a total of 73 projects and $4.1 million in funding benefitted Atlantic salmon conservation and habitat throughout Atlantic Canada.


"Today, I am pleased to announce these initiatives to benefit Atlantic salmon in Miramichi and across Atlantic Canada. Among these is the establishment of a new Ministerial Advisory Committee on Atlantic salmon, comprised of key stakeholders who will provide recommendations to advance the conservation and sustainability of Atlantic salmon. Today’s announcements demonstrate the Government of Canada’s commitment to the conservation and protection of our vital Atlantic salmon resource, which is part of Canada’s rich natural heritage."

The Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

"I’m delighted by this announcement aimed at improving the Atlantic salmon fishery and recreational fishing habitat. Our Government understands the important role of community groups such as the Miramichi Salmon Association in supporting the common goal of conserving and protecting Canada’s recreational fisheries. I’m pleased to recognize the tireless work of the Miramichi Salmon Association to protect and restore fishing habitats for generations to come."

Tilly O’Neill-Gordon, Member of Parliament for Miramichi

"With extreme weather events we have experienced recently, we need to be prepared for very warm temperatures during the summer months.  Atlantic salmon can die when water temperatures exceed 28°C, so the Miramichi Salmon Association plans to enhance the mouths of cold-water brooks to provide refuge for fish during these events.  With assistance from the RFCPP, the first sanctuary was completed this fall at Donnelly Brook and with this announcement today, two more pools will be enhanced next summer at Indiantown Brook and Otter Brook." 

Mark Hambrook, President of the Miramichi Salmon Association

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Frank Stanek
Media Relations
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Sophie Doucet
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

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