Skip to content

Groups receive funds for conservation

Volunteers plan projects aimed at recovering populations

Two volunteer groups in the Powell River area have been awarded grants totalling $33,703 to support the conservation and recovery of Pacific salmon populations and habitat in British Columbia. The Powell River Salmon Society and Desolation Sound Salmon Enhancement Society received the funds through the 2011 spring funding round of the Pacific Salmon Foundation’s community salmon program.

Projects funded through the program focus on monitoring and rehabilitation of salmon habitat and salmon stocks, education and community stewardship.

“Volunteers are the unsung heroes of Pacific salmon sustainability,” said foundation president and CEO Dr. Brian Riddell. “Their impact on the environment can be seen throughout the province, from salmon hatcheries and stewardship centres to strategically placed rocks, trees and vegetation that protect salmon-bearing streams. These are all the result of dedicated volunteers working thousands of hours to ensure a strong future for Pacific salmon.”

The grants are made possible in part as a result of money raised at the foundation’s annual dinner and auction held in Powell River. This year’s dinner is scheduled for October 22 at Dwight Hall.

“Our relationship with the Pacific Salmon Foundation is a win-win for our community as well as the foundation and the fish,” said George Illes, chair of the foundation’s Powell River dinner committee.“Anyone in our region can apply for funds for salmon projects and the funds that are raised here end up going back into worthy projects locally.”

The Powell River Salmon Society received $25,203 for its Lang Creek brood fence project. The group will repair a counting fence and counting platform used to provide counts of returning fish. A counting fence is placed across a spawning stream to corral fish toward an in-stream box, where volunteers can manually count them from an adjacent platform.

The Desolation Sound Salmon Enhancement Society received $8,500 for a project to identify and transport young salmon. The group will capture and release salmon smolts, not including coho, at Refuge Cove lagoon for identification and counting purposes. As well, the grant will fund air transportation of coho smolts to Refuge Cove to introduce a coho population that will return to the area.