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Assessment of a proposed quota increase for the Commercial Arctic Char Fishery in the Lauchlan River (Cambridge Bay, Nunavut)

Central and Arctic Regional Science Special Response Process

May 10, 2011
Winnipeg, Manitoba

Chairperson: Sue Cosens


Schedule V of the NWT Fisheries Regulations under the Fisheries Act identifies the Lauchlan River commercial Arctic Char quota as 9,100 kg.  This quota was reduced to 2,400 kg in 1994 at the recommendation of the Arctic Fisheries Scientific Advisory Committee as they had concerns about the sustainability of the harvest from the Lauchlan River and negative impacts on other nearby fisheries.  Based on the assumption that current levels of exploitation remained relatively constant for the next 10 years, it was concluded that the Lauchlan River had a moderate level of risk of exploitation.  A 2004 request for commercial quota increase at Lauchlan River was not supported by DFO.

A formal request for commercial quota increase of Arctic Charr (Salvelinus alpinus) at Lauchlan River, in the Cambridge Bay area, was received on November 25, 2009. DFO Fisheries Management has requested DFO Science conduct a review of the Lauchlan River Arctic Char fishery and provide updated advice on the request for a quota increase from 2,400kg to 9,100kg.  The advice is to be used by the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board in making a decision about the quota increase for  this year’s fishing season. 

The Science Special Response Process will consider recent information on harvest and data from commercial fish plant sampling in making an assessment of the risk of the proposed quota increase


Assess the risk that an increase in the commercial harvest from 2,400 to 9,100 kg would have on the sustainability of the Lauchlan River Arctic Char fishery.  Sources of uncertainty in the assessment will be noted.

Expected publication

A Science Response report will be produced from the material presented, reviewed and discussed at the meeting.


DFO Fisheries Management, Science, external experts and community members.


Participation to CSAS peer review meetings is by invitation only.

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