PRPA Funds Aid Salmon Research Projects in Skeena River Estuary

A portion of the Skeena River. Photo: Prince Rupert Port Authority.

More than $94,000 from the Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) is expected to help fund two unique projects supporting salmon populations in British Columbia’s Skeena River estuary and its tributaries.

The funds were allocated through the Port Authority’s Skeena River Salmon Enhancement Program, an initiative established in 2019 to provide $1 million in financial support to projects that increase salmon productivity and the maintenance and rehabilitation of habitat in the river’s watershed.  

The Port Authority contributed $70,142 toward the Multi-Year Juvenile Salmon Habitat and Eulachon Inventory Study via its partnership with Lax Kw’alaams Fishing Enterprises Ltd.

The project, according to the PRPA, aims to build the knowledge base for healthy wild runs and successful enhancement on the Skeena through surveying and analyzing fish habitat and the enumeration of eulachon, a preferred prey for salmon.

Further upstream, PRPA partnered with the Chicago Creek Community Environmental Enhancement Society to support monitoring of pink and coho salmon populations at Mission Creek, a tributary of the Bulkley River flowing into the Skeena.

PRPA contributed $24,000 to replace an aging fish fence used for enumeration of wild salmon stocks as part of a 25-year escapement data set.

PRPA President and Chief Executive Officer Shaun Stevenson said the port authority is privileged to partner with local organizations across northwest British Columbia that share a commitment to improve the health and abundance of wild salmon stocks throughout the Skeena River watershed.

The projects, he continued, would help influence long term planning and offer opportunities for additional research into salmon populations there and on Canada’s west coast.

Since the inception of the Skeena River Salmon Enhancement Program, the PRPA says it has contributed over $365,000 to projects across the northwest region.