Cold temperatures cause freezing in tanks at Old Field Hatchery on Feb. 5. (Facebook photo)

Cold snap causes ice at Oldfield Fish Hatchery

Prince Rupert volunteers cleared away ice to protect the smolt salmon

The recent cold weather in Prince Rupert has forced volunteers at Oldfield Creek Fish Hatchery to pull out their ice picks, and consider upgrades to some of their tanks.

The tanks that house the hatchery’s smolts are outside. Exposed to the elements, the tanks began to freeze after temperatures plunged below zero over the past few days in the city.

READ MORE: Arctic outflow chills North Coast inland

In order to protect the smolts and prevent the tanks’ plumbing from freezing, volunteers “chipped in” removing the ice buildup from around the tanks on Feb. 5.

“It’s something that usually happens around this time of year, but it’s something we’ve got to deal with,” said Mike McDowall, one of the volunteers with the hatchery.

There are between 6,000 – 7,000 smolt salmon currently at the hatchery, which will be released in May during the annual Smoltfest event.

McDowall said the hatchery is currently working to develop a plan to update the rearing area for the smolt so that it would be better protected from the weather.

He added that new tank technology also provides a better current that will help keep the tank clean and produce healthier, stronger fish.

The upgrade is estimate to cost between $300,000 – $400,000. McDowall said the hatchery would apply to community grants to help cover the costs if it decides to move ahead.

“We’re working on a plan so we won’t have to worry about this anymore,” he said.

READ MORE: Hatching a plan for Prince Rupert’s salmon

To report a typo, email: editor@thenorthernview.com.


Matthew Allen | Reporter
Matthew Allen 
Send Matthew an email.
Like the The Northern View on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Australian gold mining giant acquires Red Chris mine

Newcrest now owns 70 per cent of the mine south of Iskut and operatorship

Haida Gwaii storm causes B.C. ferry delay

Skidegate to Prince Rupert route affected

Prince Rupert Rampage 2019-20 season schedule released

Trio of games against Terrace River Kings plus showdowns against new teams highlight the season

Council briefs: Gurney marks one year as Lester Centre’s manager, marina revenues down

Council supports Métis Awareness week but has concern over raising Infinity Flag

In-brief: Electric charging station available in Prince Rupert, Metlakatla senior housing taking applications

Weather dampens paving plans on McBride, The Northern View Cannery Road Race is coming down the road

Captain, all-star, MVP, and all about the team

Brittanne O’Connor’s drive to create Prince Rupert’s own women’s team has led to success and inspiration

The Northern View announces inaugural Tyee Fishing Derby in Prince Rupert

More than $7,000 up for grabs for biggest legal salmon and halibut

The Northern View 2019 Readers Choice

It’s that time of year again! Vote online or at the Prince Rupert office before noon on Aug. 30

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Five hedgehogs quickly adopted after being left at BC SPCA

Lucky new owners picked up their pets from Maple Ridge branch on Aug. 20

B.C. cricket players get interrupted by racist remark

Community has had protocols in place for years to respond to prejudice

Groovy B.C. wedding a throwback to Woodstock ‘69

Couple hosts themed wedding 50 years after legendary festival

Most Read