Big Qualicum Hatchery

Contact

250-757-8412
Fax: 250-757-8741
Aaron Burgoyne

215 Fisheries Road
Qualicum Beach, B.C.
V9K 1Z5

Hours:
Open to the public: 8:00 am to 3:00 pm daily. Please telephone to confirm holiday hours.

Key Activities

Local Fishing and Community Involvement

Notice

We want to assure Canadians of our commitment to maintaining essential services and delivering on our project requirements while advancing measures to minimize transmission of COVID-19.

For the safety of our staff and visitors, this location will be closed to the public until further notice.

The Big Qualicum Hatchery deploys a number of natural and artificial enhancement techniques to increase populations of Pacific salmon. It was the first of the modern enhancement projects to be undertaken in this province and has provided a model for other developments. Research and assessment at this facility have increased the scientific data available on salmonid behaviour, life cycle and habitat requirements. The hatchery is a resource for recreational fishers in the area and an employer for the Qualicum First Nations. The hatchery also provides an important source of fish for native food fisheries and countless hours of enjoyment for local recreational fishers. Big Qualicum is the hub facility for the Little Qualicum and Rosewall facilities.

Directions

From the Inland Island Hwy (19), take the Horne Lake exit (75). Follow Horne Lake Road until you pass the railroad tracks and take the next left (continuing onto Horne Lake Road). On your immediate left (you will see a Big Qualicum Hatchery sign), turn onto the gravel road (River Road). Follow that down to the hatchery parking lot.

From the Island Hwy (19A), take the exit on Horne Lake Road. Take the first right onto a gravel road (River Road) and continue until you reach the hatchery parking lot.

Visiting the Hatchery

There is a display room containing a topographical model of the Big Qualicum project, public washrooms, viewing area (allows you to watch the fish eye-to-eye), a picnic site and nature trails. You can book a guided tour by calling the hatchery or you can do a self-guided tour. The hatchery operates 24 hours a day; the office is open from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm.

When can I see salmon?

Fall (mid-September to mid-November) is usually the best time, when the chinook and pink salmon return and the hatchery does eggs takes and sorting.

Horne Lake

Date Lake Level (ft) Surface Temperature (°C) River Flow (cfs)
October 22, 2020 380.0 13.8 189
October 15, 2020 380.4 14.6 223
October 8, 2020 380.7 17.0 224
October 1, 2020 382.0 17.5 234
September 17, 2020 383.7 19.4 233
September 10, 2020 384.5 19.9 153
September 3, 2020 385.7 19.7 154
August 28, 2020 386.3 19.4 111
August 20, 2020 386.6 20.0 112
August 13, 2020 386.9 17.9 77
August 5, 2020 387.2 18.3 78
July 30, 2020 387.5 16.0 69
July 23, 2020 387.8 15.2 70
July 16, 2020 388.1 16.4 124
July 9, 2020 388.6 15.7 108
July 3, 2020 388.8 15.1 70
June 18, 2020 389.0 10.4 70
June 11, 2020 389.92 10.4 107
June 4, 2020 389.9 12.0 110
May 28, 2020 389.9 9.1 130
May 21, 2020 390.0 9.6 130
May 14, 2020 390.8 8.9 170
April 30, 2020 390.6 6.9 83
April 16, 2020 389.3 6.2 88
April 2, 2020 388.9 5.5 88
March 26, 2020 387.9 5.3 90
March 19, 2020 387.9 5.4 90
March 12, 2020 388.0 4.8 149
March 5, 2020 387.4 4.7 164
March 5, 2020 387.4 4.7 164
February 20, 2020 388.0 4.0 334
February 13, 2020 389.0 4.4 335
February 6, 2020 389.9 4.2 493
January 31, 2020 389.7 4.6 851
January 23, 2020 389.0 4.1 777
January 17, 2020 386.9 4.1 392
January 09, 2020 387.5 5.2 439
January 02, 2020 384.7 6.4 378
December 24, 2019 384.6 6.2 206
December 19, 2019 382.4 6.8 141
December 12, 2019 380.4 7.5 134
December 5, 2019 380.0 7.8 136
November 28, 2019 380.4 8.4 151
November 21, 2019 381.0 9.4 151
November 15, 2019 379.0 10.6 149
November 7, 2019 379.7 11.1 143
October 31, 2019 380.3 10.9 113