A little about how and where we fish…
Our fish are caught exclusively by our family salmon gillnetter. Otto Strobel is the primary fisherman and has been fishing the British Columbia coast since the 1960s. Since that time the number of independent fishermen like him has been reduced to a skeleton fleet. As aquaculture and the corporate Seine fleet provide for most of the salmon now coming from our coast, the CSF model seems to us to be one way to try to allow a few of the hold out independents to stay in the fishery.
Our boat, Eldorado, is licenced for the Northern British Columbia coast which means that we can fish between Cape Caution and the Alaskan border. Most of our Sockeye salmon originate from the Skeena and Nass river runs, which have been cited as some of the most sustainable fisheries on the Pacific Coast.
Eldorado is a gillnetter: we set out a net in the path of migrating salmon. Each net mesh is sized to catch the specific species of salmon we are targeting, by ensnaring it by the gills. Smaller fish will swim right through the net while larger fish will bounce off and swim around. The net is then wheeled in on a drum and each fish is hand-picked out of the net, cleaned, and placed in a hold with iced sea water. Although there is very little by-catch our boat is equipped with highly effective revival tanks where the fish regain their strength before being released. Our fish are transported on ice to Vancouver by truck immediately following the week’s fishing.