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Spawning salmon illegally fished and 'slaughtered' in Burnaby

An unknown individual who illegally “slaughtered” two spawning salmon in Burnaby potentially deprived the ecosystem of 2,400 fry, according to streamkeeper Nick Kvenich.
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An unknown individual who illegally “slaughtered” two spawning salmon in Burnaby potentially deprived the ecosystem of 2,400 fry, according to streamkeeper Nick Kvenich.

 A local streamkeeper found these fish heads and guts near a local stream. Photo submitted.A local streamkeeper found these fish heads and guts near a local stream. Photo submitted.

The president of Eagle Creek Streamkeepers said a group member was counting returning salmon in the creek near Mark Crescent in North Burnaby when he found the heads, tails and guts of two chum salmon.

Knife marks made it clear the beheadings were not the work of wildlife, Kvenich said.

“I consider them slaughtered,” he said “That’s a sensitive note because I care for the fish.”

Kvenich said the one female and one male fish could have combined to lay and fertilize 2,400 eggs – six to eight of which would have become adult salmon returning to the creek in four years.

He suspects someone fished the salmon and gutted them on the spot to take a free meal home.

But spawning salmon are bruised, sickly and deteriorating by the time they get that far upriver in the final chapter of their life, the streamkeeper said. They would not have tasted good and would have had no market value, he said.

Kvenich asks that anyone who spots a fish poacher to contact him directly at 604-420-5651.