The Unified Command for the Big Bar Landslide officially confirmed the first stage of its Government to Government to Government response to the total obstruction on the Fraser River has been reached.
Fish counting data is showing that some limited natural passage through the slide obstruction on the Fraser River has been established for salmon migrating northwards.
From the beginning of the operation, the re-establishment of natural passage for migrating stocks was identified as the best way to ensure the maximum number of salmon are able to reach their spawning grounds.
Some Chinook has been able to swim past the Big Bar landslide using the channels created by large rock manipulation and blasting.
As of Aug. 20, approximately 6,700 salmon has passed through the slide on their own.
Helicopter transfer work continues which to date has led to the transfer of over 39,000 salmon past the slide.
Project staff will be on site until long-term, stable natural fish passage has been achieved.
“The landslide could directly or indirectly affect the ecosystem and other species dependent on the salmon’s survival. The inability of Chinook, Sockeye, Coho and Pink salmon to migrate above the landslide area this year, and in future years, could result in significant negative ecological, economic, and cultural impacts to all British Columbians and people throughout the region,” the Joint Information Centre said.
“That is why the Government of Canada, the Province of British Columbia and First Nations are working together to explore and address every avenue possible to enable passage for salmon above the landslide and are committed to conducting operations until this is achieved for this year, and for future years.”