Protesters gathered outside of Premier John Horgan’s office on Jacklin Road in Langford Friday afternoon to stand against fish farms in the province. (Katherine Engqvist/News Gazette staff)

See where escaped Atlantic salmon have been caught off Vancouver Island

Fish farm protest reaches Saanich

A trio of fish farm protesters who spent a month in Saanich outside a Department of Fisheries and Oceans office are back in Colwood where they’re camped out at Premier John Horgan’s constituency office.

Tsastilqualus Ambers, 67, and two others camped in protestation over open-net fish farms at the DFO office in Commerce Circle off Vanalman for a month. In the end they were removed by Saanich Police on Tuesday, at the request of the landlord, not DFO, said Ambers, of the Ma’amtagila Nation.

It’s the latest effort by Indigenous people on the Island to camp out in an attempt to pressure the NDP into changing fish farm legislation. There was also a rally held at Lana Popham’s office on Quadra Street back in September.

Ambers and other protesters seek higher authority for Indigenous nations in their own territories, pointing to fish farms such as those in Alert Bay of the Broughton archipelago, which exist without consent from the local First Nation, she said.

The group would like to end existing fish pens in traditional territories.

Horgan announced in October that fish farm tenures would be reviewed, as recommended in the 2012 Cohen Commission, with a focus on potentially removing them from the migratory routes of wild salmon.

In Washington State, however, there’s been a full review of open net fish farms by the state’s Department of Natural Resources. The statewide inspection was initiated after the collapse of Cooke’s Cypress Island net pen near Anacortes which released 160,000 non-native Atlantic salmon that have since been tracked on both the west and east sides of Vancouver Island.

Related: See map of Atlantic salmon caught in B.C. waters

Earlier this week DNR announced it has terminated Cooke Aquaculture Pacific’s Atlantic lease outside Port Angeles where the company farms Atlantic salmon. DNR said Cooke was operating the fish farm 500 feet outside its authorized area, was maintaining an unsafe anchoring system and was failing to prevent non-biodegradable, petroleum-based Styrofoam it uses in flotation material from leaching into the water.

Horgan’s office had already been the target of fish farm protests and Ambers says the trio plans to stay there for another 30 days.

With files from Paul Gottlieb, Peninsula Daily News

Just Posted

A 1900s writing box found in Greater Victoria contained ink, photos and a letter addressed to Clara McCaubry dated October 14, 1898. (Photo courtesy Suzanne Hervieux)
Mysterious 1900s writing box finds a home among Saanich Archives

Wooden chest owned by early Saanich resident Clara Isabelle McCaubry

For Owen Bains, having autism makes navigating the rules and social norms around COVID-19 challenging, says his mother. (Courtesy Nicole Zimmel)
Pandemic poses serious problems for children with autism, say Victoria parents

Parents of children with autism say COVID-19 is overwhelming and reducing social skills

Halloween candies ready for trick-or-treaters. (Philip Wolf photo)
PQBeat: Ghouls, goblins, candy, costumes, COVID-19 restrictions and all things Halloween

Podcast: 2020 version of the spooky night promises to be much different

The Salish Eagle sails towards Powell River from Comox in the summer of 2019 (John McKinley file)
Editorial: Time to reinstate below-decks as above board in BC Ferries

Ban on people staying on the car deck defies logic in a time of COVID-19

A sentencing hearing began for Joel Conway who was convicted of break and enter and sexual assault last year. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
Saanich man sentenced to three years in prison for breaking into woman’s home and sexually assaulting her

Crown is asking Joel Conway be sentenced to four years for both charges, to be served concurrent

Over the years, Janice Blackie-Goodine’s home in Summerland has featured elaborate Halloween displays and decorations each October. (File photo)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about Halloween?

Oct. 31 is a night of frights. How much do you know about Halloween customs and traditions?

FILE - In this Jan. 23, 1987 file photo, actor Sean Connery holds a rose in his hand as he talks about his new movie “The Name of the Rose” at a news conference in London. Scottish actor Sean Connery, considered by many to have been the best James Bond, has died aged 90, according to an announcement from his family. (AP Photo/Gerald Penny, File)
Actor Sean Connery, the ‘original’ James Bond, dies at 90

Oscar-winner was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2000

Kuterra’s smolts will come from Cermaq hatcheries. (Whole Oceans image)
Cermaq to supply salmon smolts to land-based farm Kuterra

Emergent Holdings, which operates Kuterra, and Cermaq signed a four-year agreement

Megan Dunn, Sonja Zupanec and Sue Dunn (from left) created floral headpieces as part of a fundraiser for the People for a Healthy Community on Gabriola Society food bank. (Photo courtesy Jeanette Martin)
Gabriolans support island food bank with floral hat fundraiser

Gabriola Flower Heads aim to raise $4,000 for those in need

There are now plans to reduce scaled of a proposed Ballenas running track upgrade. (PQB News file photo)
Parksville Qualicum Beach running track project plans reduced in scale

Track group to switch to community grassroots level due to lack of support from regional district

Bruce McLean, 91, has published his first novel, The Manana Treehouse, which is inspired by his wife’s experience with Alzheimer’s. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
91-year-old Saanich man publishes first novel based on wife’s Alzheimer’s experience

Former journalist Bruce McLean ‘on cloud nine’ after making fiction debut

This house at 414 Royal Ave. became notorious for its residents’ and visitors’ penchant for attracting police. It was also the site of a gruesome torture in August 2018. It was demolished in 2019. KTW
6-year sentence for Kamloops man who helped carve ‘rat’ into flesh of fellow gang member

Ricky Dennis was one of three men involved in the August 2018 attack

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.
VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

Among the pumpkin carvings created this year by Rick Chong of Abbotsford is this tribute to fallen officer Cont. Allan Young.
Abbotsford pumpkin carver’s creations include fallen police officer

Rick Chong carves and displays 30 pumpkins every year

Most Read