Evaluation of New Approaches to Estimate Ecstall Chum Escapement

Skeena chum are currently a stock of concern but lack the stock assessment data necessary to monitor trends in spawning abundance. Opportunities for visual chum escapement enumerations in the lower Skeena chum spawning areas (mainstem slough and lower river glacial tributaries) are often constrained by poor visibility. The overall objective of this project is to find the most reliable and consistent index of escapement for Ecstall chum. To do so, this project will evaluate whether ground surveys and/or a mark recapture program are feasible as a more consistent alternative (or compliment) to aerial surveys.