I just found your article from last September and found it interesting, well-written. I do believe I can add some information that is missing in your article about the Town of Port Hope salmon/steelhead fishing. I have been fishing that river for about six years now and would never miss a Spring Steelhead/September salmon fishing; my family truly enjoys it. We spend lots of money on hotels, meals, gas, equipment, etc.. We live in the Pembroke Ontario area, way too far to drive there and back for the day fishing.
About the Salmon eggs and leaving the fish there dead on shore, not brought home to be consumed but wasted instead, well I have seen it year after year the people from Toronto come to collect eggs to sell as caviar, they do not keep the fish all of the time either. Most of the time fishermen I see gutting and collecting salmon eggs are from fish that are already dead, floating down the river. Another thing is that the wardens can certainly arrest more people, but they do not, and I’m not sure why. I can stand on the river’s edge on opening day of Steelhead and see tons of illegal fishing.
Here are a couple of solutions that I would like to suggest. Firstly I really believe that answer is charging a fee for each day fished, by doing this it would eliminate the non-sportsman types. Say a nominal amount, let’s say a 10 dollar fee per person, this would eliminate many non-sportsman types, the town would get a nice little bonus. Money just for the upkeep and improvement of the Ganaraska. Conservation officers/police can write more infractions to support the fishery.
Secondly, Ontario should have a law regarding maximum hook sizes (Smaller hooks only say a size 12) on the Ganaraska, no big treble hooks period, like the ones on lures, often used to snag fish, and make it a law that only one hook per line. Believe me, this is the answer to the snagging issue, they do this in parts for the USA, and it works.
I would like to see people working together towards a sustainable fishery in Port Hope for all Canadians rather than just ban fishing for everyone. If they need help, I can certainly put in some time researching the best way to make everyone happy. The ideas I mentioned are worth a shot.