Vancouver Island’s Fishing Industry

Many people come to Vancouver Island attracted by the water that both surrounds it and the water within the island. People are attracted by the visiting wildlife and many people take the chance to go whale and dolphin spotting. The water also provides a setting for water-based activities. People are more than happy to either, swim surf or even just jump into a boat to go and take advantage of rather rivers and the sea in such a beautiful part of the world. The water is also full of fish. This includes numerous of varieties of both fresh water fish and salt water fish. Fishing has for a long time been important for local people living on the island. Firstly, the First Nations people would have supplement their food with fish as part of their staple diet, and secondly boats have been used to catch fish on a commercial basis.

Trawlers in Port Hardy

In fact, there are still trawlers that operate from several ports today. Port Hardy receives 50% of all of the wild fish that are caught off the coast as it has a strategic position along the coast. The most popular types of fish are salmon, halibut, rockfish and lingcod. People are able to hire vessels in order to catch the fish with salmon being the most popular target. All 5 species of salmon are found in abundance off the waters of Vancouver Island and there are many other ports that lay on fishing trips for people wanting to catch fish.

A popular destination on the west coast of the island is Port Renfrew. It is only 30 miles to the east of the Swiftsure bank which is supplied with nutrient rich currents. This has produced with big numbers of large Halibut, salmon and other bottom feeding fish and is a popular destination for fishermen. The beauty of Port Renfrew is that it is close many river systems. The largest in the San Juan River which has plentiful supplies of salmon and trout for eager anglers to catch. Other rivers in the area such as the Gordon River and the Caycuse River are just as enticing for fishermen.

An angler on the Cowichan River

The Cowichan River is another sort out fishing location for anglers. It is the home to some of the biggest brown trout in Canada and their size is due to the ecosystem supplying the water with an abundance of insects, crustaceans. The river also sees 90% of the steelhead salmon on the island make their way back up the Cowichan River to spawn. This results in the waters in early spring being full of salmon. Fishermen have to share the catch with hungry bears and cougars.

Ucluelet on the south of the island is another port that organizes fishing trips for tourists. Just off the coast is Big Bank which is the home to many large species, such as Chinook salmon and halibut. The bank is full of nutrients which explains why the fish grow so large.

Fishing provides great economic benefit to Vancouver Island, both from the fish that is commercially caught to the tourists that are attracted to the region in order to catch the fish. The Island is now home to numerous fish farms that take advantage of the nutrient rich waters and the future appears to be bright for the Vancouver Island fishing industry.


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