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Assessment: 

Cultus Lake sockeye salmon are a severely depleted stock, and it is unclear how harvest regulations might affect their recovery, especially since the Fraser sockeye fishery is managed as a stock aggregate that does not set escapements goals for individual stocks.

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The objective is to obtain DFO’s commitment to implementing a recovery plan with specific measures for protecting and rebuilding the Cultus Lake sockeye stock. Although DFO has conducted a recovery planning process, the assessment team was unsure how their plan would achieve specific recovery goals.

Update:

DFO confirmed their commitment to implementing a recovery strategy for Cultus Lake sockeye, which they provided at the first surveillance audit. The strategy includes specific actions for stock recovery such as control of exploitation through fishing plans, population assessment, a captive breeding project, habitat assessment, and research on the timing of adult migrations back to the lake. The assessment team noted that Cultus Lake sockeye were incidentally caught in 2010 fisheries targeting Shuswap sockeye, likely at exploitation rates of 20-30% or higher, but they closed the condition based on progress for recovery objectives.

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Status: 
Completed
Priority: 
Low
Timeline: 
Closed at the first surveillance audit May 9-13, 2011