As the end of summer draws near, Fish and Wildlife Officers wish to remind the public to review the sport fishing regulations before they go out.
One Fish and Wildlife Officer speaks about the ongoing issue of double dipping.
“That’s a major issue that we continue to see,” says District Fish and Wildlife Officer Cole Smith, who works out of the Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Branch in High Prairie.
It “consists of anglers catching and retaining their daily possession limit, taking their catch back to a residence, camp or vehicle to store or process the fish, then returning to the lake the same day to catch and retain another or multiple daily possession limits. This routine of returning to the same water source and catching another possession limit can occur many times throughout a day or weekend, causing large over limits.”
Those who catch and retain more than their limit can find themselves in court and receiving large fines, as well as the seizure of their equipment, or even their boats.
Smith also offers some advice. If you have a fish that is close to the size limit, it’s better to release it, to avoid penalties for having an under-sized fish in your possession.
If you have questions about the regulations, call the information centre for Alberta Environment and Parks at 1-877-944-0313, or send an email to ESRD.Info-Centre@gov.ab.ca. The office is open 8:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding statutory holidays.
Smith would also like to remind fishermen and anglers that flowing waters in the High Prairie area will be closed on Nov. 1, with some exceptions.
Again, consult the sport fishing regulations for more information, or call Alberta Environment and Parks. To report suspected Poaching, call the toll-free Report-A-Poacher line at 1-800-642-3800. The line can also be used for emergencies involving wildlife.