Halibut fisherman ‘absolutely stinking mad’

Dear editor,

I am absolutely stinking mad.

DFO is going to close down recreational halibut fishing as of Sept. 5?

This action is an attack on my rights as a taxpaying, law-abiding Canadian citizen.

Dear editor,

I am absolutely stinking mad.

DFO is going to close down recreational halibut fishing as of Sept. 5?

This action is an attack on my rights as a taxpaying, law-abiding Canadian citizen.

Don’t feel sorry for me, I have three halibut this year: one in May and two in July. I was hoping to try for a nice fresh one in late September or early October. Now that opportunity will be gone.

We are not talking about my opportunities; we are talking about our rights as Canadians.

This is another example of government decisions that are high-handed, political and artificial. Another example of the opposite is that the Puntledge River is likely to remain closed for chinook and coho this fall.

This is a decision arrived at by DFO in conjunction with Puntledge hatchery staff and your local sportfishing advisory committee. It is based on a biological concern for the welfare of chinook and coho spawning populations this particular year.

I belong to eight different Comox Valley organizations concerned with the protection and enhancement of our natural ecosystems and resources. I protect far more than I exploit. I, like you, work hard for my Canadian rights and freedoms and opportunities.

The halibut decision is based on extrapolated numbers, political pressures and artificial arbitrary and unfair timing.

The overall management of the halibut resource is very well and carefully done, based on sound biological principles and practices. The allocation to the recreational sector is horribly done: it amounts to an economic roadblock and an attack on the Canadian psyche.

So where do we go from here? Protest? Civil disobedience? I don’t know, but these are our rights and this halibut decision is wrong.

Larry Peterson,

Courtenay