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Protecting Southern Resident Killer Whales in southern BC coastal waters

Release date: November 2021
Infographic: Protecting Southern Resident Killer Whales in southern BC coastal waters
Description: Protecting Southern Resident Killer Whales in southern BC coastal waters

The Southern Resident Killer Whale population is endangered. There are a number of ongoing threats to their survival including reduced prey availability and increased human disturbance from fishing and boating activities. With responsible fishing practices we can support recovery and protect Southern Resident Killer Whales for generations to come.

Fish responsibly and respect regulations and best practices in critical habitat and key foraging areas.

Map of critical habitat and key foraging areas

Preferred prey is Chinook salmon year round and Chum salmon in the fall.

Keep your distance to prevent disturbing foraging whales that use sound to detect prey.

3 ways fishers can support recovery of Southern Resident Killer Whales

1. Expect restrictions in critical habitat

Expect fishing closures and restrictions in Southern Resident Killer Whale critical habitat from the spring to the fall when they are typically present in greater numbers in Southern BC waters. Management measures are implemented to help reduce fishing impacts and protect prey availability.

2. Respect best practices and regulations

Stay current with fisheries management measures and respect regulations in BC’s coastal waters. Practice responsible fishing and boating habits year-round, wherever you fish. Do your part to support salmon conservation and recovery of the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whale population.

3. Support local initiatives

Chinook and Chum salmon are important prey for Southern Resident Killer Whales. There are many opportunities to take part in local initiatives which support salmon and their habitat. For more information visit: DFO Pacific Salmon’s website.

Stop fishing (do not haul gear) within 1000 metres of killer whales

Reduce speed to less than 7 knots when within 1000 metres of the nearest marine mammal

When safe to do so, turn off echo sounders and fish finders

It is mandatory to stay 400 metres from killer whales in all southern BC coastal waters

Learn more about fisheries management measures for Southern Resident Killer Whales

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