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Nicola Watershed Stewardship & Fisheries Authority


Nicola Watershed Stewardship & Fisheries Authority (NWSFA)

The goal of the Nicola Watershed Stewardship and Fisheries Authority is to understand, promote, support, and enhance the fisheries of the Nicola Valley.

To understand our fisheries in the valley, the NWSFA conducts annual salmon stock assessment of coho and chinook salmon in collaboration with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. This program is hugely successful and both the Nicola Valley chinook and coho act as indicator stocks to understand the health of these species across the BC interior. Knowing the state of our fisheries informs us on strategies to help support and enhance populations native to the valley.

NWSFA is involved to varying capacities on many projects aimed to rehabilitate and enhance fish habitat. Each year the local rivers are monitored by staff to identify critical issues that could be negatively impacting fish populations. Some of these issues are taken care of immediately such as conducting fish salvage on stranded fish or creating fish passage when blockages are identified. Bigger issues are also delt with through large-scale restoration projects involving multiple third parties including DFO, engineers, construction companies, and environmental specialists to mitigate environmental concerns.

NWSFA also collaborates with multiple different management bodies involved with salmon and watersheds in general. The NWSFA represents Scw’exmx Tribal Council at the Fraser Salmon Management Council, Nicola Dam Flow Release Committee, Thompson-Okanagan Regional Drought Response Team, Nk’e?xep (Local Drought) Committee, Nicola Restoration Committee and offers input for Integrated Fisheries Management Plans, Canadian Science Advisory Secretariat reviews, COSEWIC Recovery Potential Assessments and many other matters. Through this involvement it is ensured that regional, provincial, and federal decisions are made with the interests and sustainability of the Nicola watershed and fisheries kept in mind. The overall goal is maintain and enhance the amount of fish in this area for future generations to come.

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