Harvesters participating in the extended commercial halibut season will need to land their catch in either Prince Rupert (pictured), Vancouver, or Port Hardy by Dec. 14. (File photo)

Harvesters participating in the extended commercial halibut season will need to land their catch in either Prince Rupert (pictured), Vancouver, or Port Hardy by Dec. 14. (File photo)

B.C.’s commercial halibut season extended three weeks

COVID-19 market disruptions at the root of DFO’s decision

B.C.’s commercial halibut season has been extended three weeks due to market disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) said the closure, normally scheduled for Nov. 15, will now fall on Dec. 7 for the 2020 season.

All groundfish hook-and-line harvesters wanting to participate in the extended halibut season will need to have the conditions of their licence amended prior to fishing past the original November closure.

READ MORE: Gitanyow study using salmon DNA to count annual runs

Additional sector-specific instructions on how to request the amendment will be forthcoming, DFO stated. However the department noted all harvests after Nov. 15 will need to be landed at one of three designated port areas in Vancouver, Prince Rupert, or Port Hardy to be validated by DFO-designated dockside observer by Dec. 14.

The landed prices of most Pacific fish harvests has fallen between 25 per cent and 40 per cent this summer, reflecting a loss of exports to food service markets, according to the BC Seafood Alliance. Meanwhile, costs to harvest, process and ship products have escalated as the sector tries to meet COVID-19 safety protocols.

While the season will last a little longer this year, last week DFO expanded on areas closed to halibut, arrowtooth and flounder harvests in Queen Charlotte Sound as part of a temporary management measure during spawning.

The year-round pilot bottom-trawl closure was first implemented in March last year.

READ MORE: DFO expands Haida Gwaii closure of groundfish trawl and halibut fisheries



quinn.bender@blackpress.ca

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

U’mista Cultural Centre is closed to the public until further notice, as of Nov. 23, 2020. (Zoe Ducklow photo)
U’mista closed until further notice due to new restrictions

North Island on high alert against COVID-19

Port Hardy Rotary Christmas Float. (North Island Gazette file photo)
Rotary float returns to Port Hardy to spread much needed Christmas cheer

The Christmas Cheer Float is a festively decorated full-size semi-tractor.

Email letters to editor@northislandgazette.com and we will publish online and in print.
LETTER: Fish farms boost North Island economy

“… our local jobs, local taxation revenue, and the like will disappear!”

People wearing face masks to help curb the spread of COVID-19 cross a street in downtown Vancouver, on Sunday, November 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. reports 17 COVID deaths, 1,933 new cases as hospitalizations surge over the weekend

There are 277 people in hospital, of whom 59 are in ICU or critical care

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers at the project site in Kitimat. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared last Thursday (Nov. 19). (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
Forty-one positive COVID-19 cases associated with the LNG Canada site outbreak in Kitimat

Thirty-four of the 41 cases remain active, according to Northern Health

Brenda Schroeder thought she was reading it wrong when she won $100,000 from a Season’s Greetings Scratch & Win. (Courtesy BCLC)
New home on the agenda after scratch ticket win in Saanich

Victoria woman set to share her $100,000 Season’s Greetings lottery win

Workers arrive at the Lynn Valley Care Centre seniors home, in North Vancouver, B.C., on Saturday, March 14, 2020. It was the site of Canada’s first COVID-19 outbreak in a long-term care facility. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Rapid tests ‘not a panacea’ for care homes, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

B.C. lacks capacity for daily tests of thousands of workers

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

(Delta Police Department photo)
Cannabis edibles found in Halloween bag lead B.C. police to illegal lab

Delta police arrested a man and a woman while executing a warrant at a residential property Nov. 20

A woman being arrested at a Kelowna Value Village after refusing to wear a mask on Nov. 22.(@Jules50278750/Twitter)
VIDEO: Woman arrested for refusing to wear mask at Kelowna Value Village

RCMP claims the woman was uncooperative with officers, striking them a number of times and screaming

B.C. Liberal MLA Shirley Bond questions NDP government ministers in the B.C. legislature, Feb. 19, 2020. (Hansard TV)
Cabinet veteran Shirley Bond chosen interim leader of B.C. Liberals

28-member opposition prepares for December legislature session

Most Read