Category Archives: Streamkeeping

More Coho Dying Unspawned on Byrne Ck in Burnaby

Volunteers with the Byrne Creek Streamkeepers Society are seeing more coho prespawn mortality this season. That’s when coho that return to spawn die before they can do so.

This has been a recurring problem on the creek over the years, and is likely due to polluted road wash that carries contaminants into the water. There are ongoing studies in Washington State that point to a toxic brew of contaminants in stormwater as being lethal to coho, which seem particularly susceptible to it.

male prespawn mortality coho
We found this coho male today

female prespawn mortality coho
And this coho female full of eggs a couple of days ago

We get so few coho back to Byrne Creek that we treasure every one, and it’s so sad to see them die without completing their life cycle.

We desperately need to infiltrate water washed off from roads and parking lots into the ground through swales and rain gardens. The ground acts as a natural filter. Yet the Byrne Creek watershed in Burnaby, BC, is seeing more and more ground paved over despite hundreds of hours of professional and public input into Stormwater Management Plans and a recent Environmental Sustainability Strategy.

Note that it is illegal to interfere with spawning salmon. Streamkeepers have training and permission to process dead salmon to collect data on species, size, spawning status, etc. We return the carcasses to the creek after processing as they provide food and nutrients to other fish, animals and the overall ecosystem.

SEHAB Meeting on Sunshine Coast

The volunteer Salmonid Enhancement and Habitat Advisory Board to the Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans met in Gibsons, BC, for a 2-1/2 day meeting this weekend. Thanks to local stewardship volunteers who showed us around! Here are some shots taken over the weekend.

We had a great working weekend, got lots done, and have lots of things to share with DFO Pacific Regional HQ.


The ferry from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale


Me and Jan on the ferry. Thanks to my wife Yumi for this photo. I represent the North Side of the Fraser River from Burnaby to Mission, and Jan is a rep from the north coast.


Getting down to work


Great presentations from DFO


Some happy guy who just loves meetings! 🙂


A local Gibsons, BC, icon, that will be familiar to lots of Canadians of certain generations.


Now that’s a huge 3D watershed map!


Hopeful heron wishing the nets at the hatchery were not quite so effective 🙂

sehab sunshine coast gibsons chapman


Gotta goof around a bit to stay sane, eh?


Eagles checking us out as we were checking out the hatchery


American Dipper

Reveling at the Chill, the Rain

Gotta go to sleep, early shift tomorrow, but hearing what sounds like a few drops outside my window in south #Burnaby makes me happy.

Yes, I’m happy at the chill in the air, and the looming precipitation. Rain means salmon are coming. . .

All ya folks out there sad at the rain and the dark, get thee back outside, and feel, touch, smell the season.

Autumn is glorious, especially here in the lower mainland of BC.

Nighty night.

Fall Fish Trapping on Byrne Ck in Burnaby

Volunteers did our early fall pre-spawner fish trapping today and were happy to find lots of coho smolts and cutthroat trout. All released unharmed, of course!

Streamkeepers have permission from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans for such activities, and training from the Pacific Streamkeepers Federation.

Byrne Creek fish trapping
Placing a retrieved Gee trap in a basinette for enumeration


Lovely specimen


Volunteer Yumi measures a fish


We use dry cat food for bait


Lovely day to be on the creek!


The above two photos show the general area of the site with the trap that had the most fish. Rough areas for humans to get through, but fish love the complexity and cover.


Lots of cool fungi deep in the bush!