LETTER: Harbour seals eating up salmon

Re: No fish zones eyed to save killer whales (News, Feb. 28)

From a noise standpoint, it doesn’t make much sense to ban small recreational fishing vessels who putter along with their little kickers producing minimum noise while other high speed recreational vessel and whale watching boats zoom around along with the usual commercial traffic.

As far as the shortage of chinook salmon goes, Fisheries and Oceans Canada knows that one of the biggest impacts on fish stocks can be attributed to the exploding number of harbour seals. In 1975 there was a population of about 8,000 harbour seals in the Salish Sea area and by 2015 that number had grown to almost 80,000. One harbour seal eats more salmon in a year than most recreational fishers catch in a lifetime. It is very apparent that a major seal cull is past due but it appears DFO is reluctant to make a decision based on science if it ruffles the feathers of the mainly uneducated but emotional environmentalists.

Lyle Willson

Sooke

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