Victoria, Saturday January 28th:
The 93rd International Pacific Halibut Commission annual meeting has just wrapped up at the Delta Hotel Ocean Pointe Resort in Victoria, BC. At the meeting, the IPHC commissioners heard from the harvesters through the Conference Board and the packers and processors through Processors Advisory Board; they have decided upon a Total Allowable Catch (TAC) for Pacific Halibut catch in the North Pacific for 2017. One of the best managed fish species on the planet, Pacific Halibut have been managed under a two coutry agreement for nearly 100 years, where Canada and the USA jointly set catch limits based on the IPHC stock assessment and science advice as well as input from harvesters and processors to ensure sustainability.
Your SVIAC representative Chris Bos attended this meeting to ensure our Canadian voting opportunity. The 2017 Total Allowable Catch for Area 2B (Canada) is 7.45 million lbs., which is slightly higher than the 7.3 million lbs Canada was allowed in 2016. 15% percent of Canada’s TAC will be designated for the public recreational fishery, so we can expect a similar season and daily catch limits this year as in 2016. Here is a link to the IPHC Newsrelease – http://iphc.int/news-releases/491-nr2017-01.html
The Sport Fishing Advisory Board’s Halibut Committee will be meeting in the next few days to discuss their recommendations to DFO for the 2017 Halibut season. February 1st is rapidly approaching so DFO needs to approve our fishig plan real soon. SVIAC are hopeful the season will open on February 1st this year as it has in the past few years. We will update this post as more season details become available.