Local Salmon and Habitat Conservation Projects Approved
Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program Approves Funding for 2015 Projects
COURTENAY – The Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program (FWCP) announced today that it will fund the K’ómoks First Nation to study genetic diversity in local summer chinook stocks. The results of this work will help support chinook in the Puntledge River watershed. This is one of seven local projects approved for funding by the FWCP’s Coastal Region Board in the Puntledge River watershed this year.
Two other hands-on fish projects will also receive FWCP funds and should bring almost immediate benefits to local fish including the endangered Morrison Creek Lamprey. One project will improve fish passage for salmonids and other species at Morrison Creek near Courtenay, and the other will improve the habitat and function of the K’ómoks estuary.
“Angling and aquaculture are very important to our region’s economic health. Anglers, both local and those drawn from afar, fish the Puntledge River and its estuaries,” said Comox Valley MLA Don McRae. “The work the K’ómoks will carry out from this funding will help sustain salmon runs in our local rivers and streams so future generations of anglers can enjoy this wonderful natural resource.”
The FWCP also approved funds that will go towards purchasing land along Perseverance Creek, south west of Cumberland. This land purchase will help conserve some of the remaining wetland and riparian habitat in the watershed and protect local salmon habitat.
Together, seven projects will receive more than $413,000 from the FWCP, which conserves and enhances fish and wildlife impacted by BC Hydro dams. Learn more at fwcp.ca.
These projects get underway this spring and conclude by early 2016. They are among 41 projects approved by the FWCP-Coastal Region Board, which will provide approximately $2 million in projects this year.
The Board, which includes First Nations, public stakeholders, BC Hydro, the Province of BC and Fisheries and Oceans Canada, funds projects that align with its watershed and action plans. The Board may direct funds later in the year to other projects it deems a priority for the region.
“Each project we approve for funding aligns with our local Action Plans, and goes through a technical review before being reviewed by our Board members who make the final decisions,” says FWCP Manager, Trevor Oussoren.
The FWCP-Coastal Region includes Vancouver Island, the Lower Mainland and the Southern Interior.
For more information contact
Stephen Watson, on behalf of the FWCP
BC Hydro, Vancouver Island Community Relations 250-755-4795