Two Salmon enhancement projects received more than $94,000 from Prince Rupert Port Authority, the organization announced on Dec. 11. (Photo: Supplied)

Two Salmon enhancement projects received more than $94,000 from Prince Rupert Port Authority, the organization announced on Dec. 11. (Photo: Supplied)

Prince Rupert Port Authority contributes $94,000 to Salmon enhancement projects

Two ‘unique’ projects will support research and monitoring along the Skeena River

Two unique salmon enhancement projects supporting research and monitoring of salmon populations along the Skeena River will benefit from more than $94,000 in contributions from the Prince Rupert Port Authority, the organization announced on Dec. 12.

Lax Kw’alaams Fishing Enterprises Ltd. received $70,142 to manage the Multi-year Juvenile Salmon Habitat and Eulachon Inventory Study as part of the PRPA’s Skeena River Salmon Enhancement Program.

The Lax Kw’alaams study is a project that will survey and analyze fish habitat and the numbers of oolichan, which salmon feed on. This will increase the knowledge base of healthy wild runs and successful enhancement of the Skeena River and its tributaries, PRPA stated in a press release.

“Developing these benchmarks is critical to implementing future measures for eelgrass planting and salmon habitat restoration,” Jay Alexcee with Lax Kw’alaams Fishing Enterprises Ltd. said.

“With the support of the Skeena River Salmon Enhancement Program, we have made meaningful strides towards gathering the necessary data to further conservation efforts in the Skeena River estuary,” Alexcee said.

A second partnership project managed by the Chicago Creek Community Environmental Enhancement Society (CCCEES) received $24,000 to replace an aging fish fence as part of a 25-year escapement data set. The program supports the monitoring of Pink and Coho populations at Mission Creek, a tributary of the Bulkley River which flows into the Skeena.

“Without escapement data, protection measures would not be possible. The Mission Creek Fish Fence Rebuild Project is critical in order to move coho above an impassable barrier at Highway 16 and this infrastructure ensures coho have access to important habitat for years to come,” Brenda Donas with the CCCEES said.

Shaun Stevenson, president and CEO of PRPA said they are privileged to partner with local organizations who are committed to improving the health and abundance of wild salmon stocks throughout the Skeena River watershed.

“Through the collection of key data, these projects will help influence long-term planning and offer opportunities for additional research into salmon populations here on the West Coast of Canada,” he said.

The PRPA established the Skeena River Salmon Enhancement Program in 2019 with a $1 million endowment from its Community Investment Fund.

Since the program’s inception, PRPA has contributed more than $365,000 to projects across the Northwest.

The program aims to team up with regional partners such as First Nations, non-governmental organizations, and community groups on projects that enhance the salmon population and protect their habitat in the Skeena River and its watershed.


K-J Millar | Editor and Multimedia Journalist
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