Combatting Atlantic salmon poaching

Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Conservation and Protection Branch promotes and maintains compliance with legislation, regulations, policies and management measures implemented to achieve the:

Fishery officers are on the water, on the wharves, in communities and at facilities ensuring the conservation and protection of species, and the long-term sustainability of Indigenous, commercial and recreational fisheries across Canada.

Each year, the branch dedicates thousands of hours to surveillance and collaborating with Indigenous organizations, industry groups and individual harvesters to:

In most areas of Atlantic Canada and Quebec, salmon angling seasons are closed due to conservation concerns, with the exception of some rivers in Nova Scotia and Newfoundand, where catch-and-release using single hook barbless artificial ties is allowed.

Fishery officers are working hard to combat the illegal poaching of Atlantic salmon through:

Fishery officers, Aboriginal fishery guardians and contracted fishery guardians (in Newfoundland) regularly:

The National Fisheries Intelligence Service helps guide investigations so fishery officers can focus on areas of greatest risk.

Report Atlantic salmon poaching

To report poaching on the East Coast, contact us.

Poaching by the numbers

Combatting Atlantic salmon poaching

In 2017, fishery officers spent over 105,000 hours looking for Atlantic salmon poachers throughout Atlantic Canada and northern Quebec.

  • 41 warnings issued
  • 379 violations found
  • 259 charges laid
  • 34 seizures of unattended gear/catch

Violations included:

  • illegal gear or illegal use of gear
  • fishing in closed areas or out of season
  • fishing without a licence
  • illegal sale or purchase of Atlantic salmon
  • retaining Atlantic salmon where prohibited, or retaining undersized fish

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