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can be allotted to any particular part of the province. The salmon must be permitted
to reach their spawning grounds in the interior in order that the supply may be kept
up for the fishermen of the coast regions about the mouths of the various rivers which
the fish ascend.

Second only to the salmon in yield is the halibut. The halibut fishing industry
centers at Prince Rupert and might be particularly claimed as belonging to the central
part of the province.

The fisheries of British Columbia as a whole are more extensive and valuable than
those of any other province of the Dominion. In 1917 they exceeded the combined
output of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. They also exceeded the output of the
remaining six provinces collectively and represented more than one-third of the entire
Canadian fisheries for the year. The value of the fisheries production of British
Columbia has increased most rapidly. Records have been kept since the year 1876,
when the total value of the fish catch was given as a trifle over one hundred thousand
dollars. In 1880 it was nearly three-quarters of a million, while the following year it
was double these figures. In 1888 it almost reached two million dollars, and the next
year passed the three-million mark. In 1893 it reached beyond four million dollars,
and 1897 beyond six millions. Values varied for some years but finally passed the
ten-million mark in 1909, fell below the following year but reached thirteen millions
in 1911 and in 1917 the remarkable figure of twenty-one and a half million dollars.

Statistics regarding the quantities and values of all fish and fish products marketed
in British Columbia in 1917 and the capital equipment and number of employees are
shown in the following tables. The information is taken from the Census of Industry,
1917, Part III, Fisheries Statistics, as published by the Dominion Bureau of
Statistics. The report was prepared in collaboration with Dominion and Provincial
Fieheries Departments and represents the most accurate and reliable information
covering the subject.



37



38



Central Briii^li Columhia



BRITISH COLUMBIA
*QuANTmES AND Valles OF All Fi<ii A xd Fi-^ir PRnnTTT-; Marketed, 1917



Kinds of Fish



Quantity



Value



Black cod, usetl fresli. . .
preen salted.

" smoke

" dried



Brill

Clams and quahaugs, used fresh.

" canned

Dulse, crabs, cockles, etc

Fertilizer

Fish oil

Flounders

Fur seal skins



Gill bone

CJ ray fish, use<l fresh

Hake and cusk, used fresh.

" " smoked...

Halibut, usetl fresh

" smoketl

Herring, used fresh

canned

" smoked

" dry-salted

" pickled

" u.stnl as bait

Mixe<l lish

Octopus

Oulachons

Oysters



Perch

Pilchards, salted

" canned

Rock cod

•Salmon, used fresh. . .
" canned

.-mi-ked

dry-salted .

iiiild-fured. .
Salmon roe .

Shad, used fresh

" salted....

Skate

Smelts

Soles.. .
Sturgeon.

Trout

Whale lx)ne and meal

Whale oil

Whiting, used fresh

)<riioke<l .
Wit.hcs



Total valu"



73,164

386

6,786

8

5,142

5,992

6,006

5,886

1,220

44,820

2,679

218

510

11,200

143

25

113,285

122

87,173

46,650

6,263

161,865

7,293

.28,785

1,648

184

1,231

1,789

492

200

1 , 090

1,086

262,067

,557,485

1,418

12,670

8,611

1,564

21

15

1,633

1,164

7,806

445

414

291

436,995

345

100

5



cwt.



brl.
cases,
cwt.
ton.
gal.
cwt.
no.
cwt.



qtl.



cases,
cwt.



brl.



brl.
cwt.
brl.
cases
cwt.

cases
cwt.



brl.
cwt.

brl.
cwt.

ton.
gal.
cwt.



$



743,229

4,338

131,709

128

51,420

35,952

48,048

48,424

70,164

23,892

23,601

6,540

12,802

4,480

715

375

1.718,500

2,512

341,239

304,017

29,025

328,721

117,828

71,824

13,184

1,656

10,991

32,202

4,920

2,000

9,810

8,088

2,550,274

14,017,365

23,222

125! 979

111,943

7,820

315

360

10,117

14,270

78,649

9,790

10,350

10,185

342,247

1 , 725

1 , 000

50



21,518,595



In.liiHlrv I!tl7.



tM til.- «iit:r< .-ai^-ii i<i V.H~ nearly four-fifths were salmon, with a groos value of
*l«,K28,78:j. Halibut took scn-ond pluce with a value of $1,721,012. Herring came
thir«l and were valued at $l,ll>2,«r)4. Black i-od accounted for $879,404, clams and
qu::' ; $84,CM")C>, h(.l(iii for $7S,f»41), and ovt^ters for $.'32,202. These seven divisions

of • v n-fourci* iirodurcd $2M.Klf;.7o4 out of the total of $21,518,5i>5 at which

the catch of 1017 was marketed.

The share that should be cn-ditcd to the coast and coat;t rivers of Central British
Columbia, of which PriiK-o Rupert is the centre of the industry, is shown on the



Fisheries



39



followiiiij' table. The principal varieties of fish are five only, namely: t-almon, halibut,
herring, black cod, and tholes. The subdivisions of this section are Skeena river,
Prince Kupert, Kivers inlet, Naas river. North Coast and Queen Charlotte islands.
The fishing waters of these subdivisions are tributary to Prince Rupert, thus bring-
ing to Central British C<»hnn])ia the benefit of the industry.



CENTRAL BRITISH COLUMBIA
♦Commercial Fisheries of 1917



Fishing Districts


Salmon
cwt.


Halibut
cwt.


Herring

cwt.


Black Cod
cwt.


Soles
cwt.


Skeena river


252,074

25,746

80,053

100,375

222,336

39,675












62,879


19,900


13,271


5 717


Rivers inlet




Naas river










North coast


1,533


8,528
189


510




Queen Charlotte islands










Total quantity

Total value marketed


720, 259
$7,656,650


64,412
$965,320


28,617
$44,490


13,781
8131,924


5,717
857,170


Grand total










$8,855,554













*Census of Industry, 1917.

The great soekeye salmon packs of the Fraser, Skeena and Naas rivers have
become famous in all parts of the wc^rld. Their habits form most interesting
subjects of investigation. Though normally a salt water fish they ascend the rivers
upon reaching maturity to spawn mostly in streams beyond the lakes of the interior.

The Fraser river spawning grounds include such large lakes as Harrison,
Lillooet, Seton, Anderson, Chilko, and Quesnel. The Mcziadin lake section is one of
the principal spawning areas of the Naas river. Eggs are deposited and hatched in
these interior lakes after which the parent fish die. The young fry, or fingerlings
as they are called, find their waj' down stream to the ocean, where they spend some
four years in reaching maturity. They then start on their long journey to the
spawning beds from which they were hatched, their helming instincts being described
as most highly developed. It is believed they actually are led by this instinct to the
very waters of their origin.

In countless millions they battle their way up stream, crowding and hurrying
forward as if driven by relentless foes. Seemingly inaccessible rapids and barriers
are scaled by feats of wonderful jumping and swimiiiing. Should impassable barriers
halt their journey they accumulate in masses so thick that the waters appear packed
full of them. It is said they do not rest or feed cii these migrations, and' many
literally batter themselves to pieces in ascending rocky rapids.

Great losses to the salmon industry resulted from blocking their access to their
spawning areas on the upper Fraser. A dam constructed in connection with mining
activities across the outlet of Quesnel lake barred the entrance of fish foT some
time. Though the soekeye passed up the Quesnel river in millions, they could not
enter the lake. Later a practical fishway was constructed to overcome the barrier.
In 1909 over four million soekeye entered this lake, while in 1913, owing to a blo'^k-
ade in the Fraser canyC'ii, caused by a slide of rock from the Canadian Northern



40 Central British Columhia

railway construction, only about half a million reached these spawning grounds.
The run to Chilko lake was large in the years 1901, 1905 and 1909, but email in 1913
owing to the same blockade. The importance of keeping the way clear to these areas
is therefore apparent.

The Meziadin lake section is now a favourite spawning ground for the Naas
soekeye packs. Falls in the Meziadin form a natural barrier, but these are now over-
come by a great fehway constructed by the Dominion Fisheries Branch. In the
spawning season, during the spring and early summer months, these salmon push
their way up the large rivers into the many lakes lying inland, and even ascend
the smallest tributaries to every favourable body of water, however small, within
reaeh.

Salmon are caught chiefly by gill-nets, seines and trap-nets operated from fleets
of small fishing smacks. They are immediately taken to canneries constructed at
convenient points all along the coast and put up for trade in tin cans, packed in
wooden cases. Fishing may be conducted only under license, which must be obtained
from the fisheries officials. The Dominion Government has established a number
of hatcheries for the purpose of increasing this valuable species. Two are located
in Central British Columbia, one being on Babine lake and one on the Skeena
river. From these some 13,450,000 soekeye were hatched in 1917 and liberated in
the Skeena watershed. There are some seven or eight additional salmon hat'cheries
in the more southerly parts of the province, and the total number of salmon fry
produced in 1917 approached fifty million.

The halibut fishing industry of the Pacific coast adjacent to Prince Rupert has
come into considerable prominence during the last few yeai-s and is of special interest
to Central British Columbia. This industry is carried on in lai'ge, well-equipped
steamers and vessels. The fish are captured by set lines or hand trawls, dories being
used for setting and hauling the lines, as in the Atlantic deep-sea fishing. Herring
are mainly need for bait, the supply of these fish being very plentiful in these waters.

The Pacific coast, with its numerous sheltering islands and deep inlets and
fiords, affords most excellent fishing grounds of unusual protection. The length of
this coast line, in British 'Columbia waters, exceeds 7,000 miles. Luxuriant forests
clothe these shores, adding to the general pleasing effect.

At Prince Eupert during the height of the fishing season, about July, the
"mosquito fleet," as it is called, comprised of fishing boats of an average value of
about $8,000 each, presents quite a busy scene. Canneries are scattered at various
points up and down the shore, hut most of the halibut catch is shipped out in
special trains. The Canadian Fish and Cold Storage Company, Limited, has a cold
storage plant at Seal Cove of 14,000,000 pounds' capacity, now being increased by
some 3,500,000 pounds. Fish are delivered from the "mosquito fleet" here and
loaded into special refrigerator cars. Special " fish trains," made up of a number of
these car.s, leave Prince Rupert three or four times a week and rusli through the
province on their long run by way of Edmonton and Saskatoon to Winnipeg. They
are there distributed, tlie bulk of the produce eventually finding a market in Chicago
or eastern cities.

This great commercial industry is well established, and with proper control
promises to be a jiermanent and jtrofitable one for the district.



Fisheries



41



The follo-\ving table shows a summary of the value of equipment and the number
of persons engaged in connection with the fish industry in the whole province in
1917:—

BRITISH COLUMBIA FISH INDUSTRY

*Equipment and Employees, 1917



Equipment



Value



Seines, traps and smelt nets, etc

Hand lines, weirs, trawls, etc

Salmon and crab traps .

Piers and wharves

Freezers, ice houses, whaling stations, salteries and crab and oyster establishments (approx)

Canneries and fish and smoke houses

Small fish and smoke houses (approx.)

Vessels, tugs and carrying smacks (514)

Boats, gasoline (3,172)

" sail and row (3,479)

Total capital



$

829,115

103,681

l'),70()

504,047

152,505

749,476

3,200

2,500,801

1,837,820



12



21,696,345



Persons Employed



Location



No.



In vessels, etc

" boats

" freezers, ice houses and whaling stations
" canneries and fish and smoke houses. . . .

Total



1,589

11,378

292

7,624



20,883



*Census of Industry, 1917.

The total number of salmon canneries in British Columbia is given as 87 for the
year 1917, with one whale oil factory and 21 fish and smoke liouses.

While these figures are interesting as amplifying the wonderful extent and great
value of the fishing resources of the province, they are of special value only to those
concerned with the commercial side of the subject. The great majority of visitors,
tourists or new settlers are more concerned with the sporting phase. Fishing for
pleasure is a practice to which the majority of men who know little or nothing of the
commercial phase are more or less addicted. To the lovers of both rod and gun
Central British Columbia offers a field of unparalleled attractions. Fly-fishing of the
very best awaits the angler throughout the length and breadth of this district in the
many lakes and streams with which it abounds. Gamest of all game fish are found in
the cool, rippling mountain streams of the interior and the crystal lakes nestling
between towering ranges of snow-capped mountains.

Of the five species of salmon found in British Columbia only two will take a troll
or fly. These are the " Spring " and the " Coho " salmon. The Spring or Tyee salmon
is the largest and gamest of the salmon family. It is known in Oregon as the
" Chinook " or the " Columbia," in California as the " Quinnat," and in Alaska as the
" King " or " Tyee." It takes the troll quite freely in salt water and occasionally
rises to an artificial fly. These fish are caught in great numbers all along the coast



42 Central British Columhia

and vary in weight up to GO poundc^, with records as hitih as 70 poinuls. The best
months are from July to Xoveniber. The Coho are even more numerous than the
Spring, though smaller in size. They are considered equally game and may be taken
as late in the year as October or November. The more southern waters are better
known and more frequented by salmon anglers, Campbell river, on the eastern coast
of Vancouver island, being a favourite rendezvous. The salmon rivers of the more
northerly parte, including the Skeena and Xaas, should prove equally attractive.
When they become better known. Prince Rupert sho\ild prove the centre of tourist
traffic connected with this branch of sport.

The trout of British Columbia comprise many species with great variation in
colourings and markings. The steelhead trout closely resembles in habit, form and
colour the salmon of Europe and is still sometimes classed as a Pacific salmon. ].:ke
the salmon, it spawns only in fresh water, but differs in that it survives and returns to
the sea, where it remains until the following spawning season. In some of the larger
lakes of the province it remains permanently in fresh water. This species weighs
from four to twenty pounds, with exceptional weights as high as thirty pounds. Many
anglers consider this the gamest fish taken in fresh water.

Numerous varieties of trout are found in all the rivers and lakes of Central
British Columbia. The larger specimens found in the great lakes largely resemble the
sea-run of the steelhead. The cut-throat and rainbow trout are also widely distributed.
The many differences in colour, form and habit of these varieties lead to gi'eat
numbers of names being applied to them, but by whatever name they are known they
are none the less game.

Two very valaal)le species of charr are found. They are the "Dolly Varden,"
or " Bull trout," and a lake trout such as is found in Lakes Superior and Michigan.
The Dolly Varden is found all through the mainland and on the coast; it is a very
game fish, and ranges in weight from a few ounces up to thirty jjounds, but species
exceding two pounds in weight are seldom taken with a fly. The larger ones freely
take a troll. The lake trout are found in Quesnel and northern lakes. They are not
fierce fighters, but are rated as the best of table fish found in the fresh waters of the
province.

An enthusiastic holiday fisherman from Xew York, after hooking and laudini:' three
speckled beauties from a single cast with triple leaders in Lakelse lake, pronoiuiccd
these waters the finest for trout fishing he had ever visited. All ihrough the interior,
however, such success may be obtained. The many lakes and lakeU'ts, rivers and
streams are most plentifully stocked with fish, and afi'ord lu-vcr failing si)ort for the
ardent angler and a source of food supply for the settK r.

Large sturgeon are caught with hook and bait in the lakes and rivers of the
interior plateau. Whitefish are netted in great quantities in the more northerly
streams and in Moberly lake east of the Rockies. In the Parsnip, Finlay and more
northerly streams a fish locally called the " Arctic trout" is quite common.

Settlers and others coming to Central British Columhia will find great oitportuni-
ties for recreation and profit in capturing the many varieties of beautiful and valuable
game and connnercial fish with which the widely distributed waters of the district
abound. Government hatcheries are doing a good work in keeping up the supply, and
this highly ijrizcd n.-source l)ronli^eB to be a most substanti;il and permanent one.




A slimpse of the Nechako valley near Vanderhoof.




Road leading from Vanderhoof north through the Nechako valley.



FUR AND GAME

The lirst white men to invade British Columbia were fur traders and the fur
industry held unrivalled sway for fifty years, ^^^len Alexander Mackenzie, in 1793,
ascended the Peace and Parsnip rivers and found his way through the Eockies and to
the Pacific coast near Bella Coola he blazed the way for the occupation of Central
British Columbia by outpost agents of the great fur company in which he held a
position as partner, namely, the Northwest Company.

Early in the nineteenth century thie progressive company pushed westward over
the mountains and established a chain of posts in the interior. Fort MacLeod, erected
in 1S05, on the shores of MacLeod lake, soon became an important centre of trade.
Fort St. James, Fort Fraser, Fort George and Qoiesnel quickly followed in line and
the avenues of commerce that had halted for a time at the Athabaska or Saskatchewan
were extended west of the Rockies.

The lure of furs brought their great rivals, the Hudson's Bay Company, to these
new found fields. It also led to the formation of a new American enterprise, the
Pacific Trading Company, which established the historic post of Astoria on the lower
Columbia. The amalgamation of the two great Canadian companies in 1821, under
the name of the older, the Hudson's Bay Company, and their purchase of the unsuc-
cessful American interests, including Astoria, are matters of most interesting record.
It was the visions of wealth to be derived from the furs of the sea otter and sea lion
that spurred on the Russian explorers to the acquisition of Alaska and the valuable
coast waters of these northern parts.

For fifty years the fur trade was carried on uninterrupted by other industries.
The Hudson's Bay Company, with a staff of white traders and clerks and an army
of native followers and hunters, reigned supreme in these regions and took their toll
of wealth from every section of the mountains and valleys. Even Avhcn Vancouver
island was declared in 1S49 the Crown colony "New Caledonia," it was practically
governed for years by this great fur company.

Then came the gold discoveries on the Fraser river and the great rush of miners
into the interior in l8r>C, 1S57, and 1858. A rival industry had come with an onrush
that eclipsed the fur trade, and for a time pushed it almost into oblivion. Gold was
the craze, and the interior dietrif-ts of Cariboo, Omineca and Cassiar witnessed scenes
of wildest excitement.

The gold boom brought numbers to the district and opened it W]^ to the world at
large. The fur traders no longer held a inonopoly of the land. When mining waned
other industries sprang up. The wealth of the forests, fisheries and lands was realized
by the new comers, who saw in these reginus unlimited resources and wonderful possi-
bilities that the fur traders could not or wrmld not admit.

Mining, lumbering, fishing, farming, shi!>building and other industries have grown
into prominence, but the fur trade that held lone sway for the first fifty years of the
white man's occupation of these parts goes on apace. The mountainous nature of the
province prohibits the settlement and cultivation of more than about ten per cent of
its total land area, thus leaving vast regions of wilderness in which the wild animal
and bird life jiropagate their specici?.

44



Fur and Game 45

In the mountainous and sparsely settled districts of Central British Columbia are
still to be found in great numbers practically every species of game and fur-bearing
animal common to these regions since the earliest days. Large Huml^ers of men still
pursue trapping as their sole occupation, and, with the high price of furs that has pre-
vailed in recent years, find it a very remunerative calling. Both game hunting and
wing shooting may be enjoyed to the fullest extent in these parts.

The quality of furs obtained in Central British Columbia is the very highest.
Marten compares favourably with the Russian sable, while fisher, lynx, foxes, and
beaver are exceptionally good. Prince George is the centre of a gi-eat fur trade and
the value of raw pelts shiipped from this port in 1918 was approximately $400,000.

The large game includes moose, wapiti or elk, cariboo, deer, mountain sheep,
goats, bear, wolves and three species of the cat family. The smaller fur-bearing
animals include black, silver and cross foxes, beaver, musk-rat, otter, raccoon, marten,
mink, wolverine, badger, porcupine, hare, skunk, polecat, weasel, sea-lion, hair seal
and a very few sea otter.

Moose are very plentiful throughout the interior and northern regions. The
biggest and best heads are obtained in the Cassiar district which is best reached by
way of the Stikine river. Prince George is also the centre of an excellent moose
district. Along the upper Fraser and Parsnip rivers moose are very plentiful and
have increased in numbers greatly during the last few years. Si)endid heads are
obtained from these districts. The grounds are easily accessible and hunting condi-
tions are good. The district lying to the north and east of Prince George is excep-
tionally good.

The wapiti or elk were at one time quite numei-ous but are now exceedingly rare.
They are now protected by a continuous close season in hopes that this noble species
will not become extinct.

Cariboo are found in plenty. The Black or Mountain species are found in nearly
all mountainous parts of the interior with the Chilcotin, Quesnel and Prince George
districts favourable hunting grounds. In the more northerly parts big bands of the
species known as Osbom's cariboo are found.

Mule deer and Richardson's or large black-tailed deer are widely spread over the
more southerly parts of the district. The Columbia or Coast deer is plentiful along
the coast but is not found east of the Coast range of mountains. The most common
and widely found species of deer in Central British Columbia is the white-tailed
species. These are found throughout all parts of the great interior plateaus.

Mountain sheep include four species, namely, the Common Bighorn, Oris Stonei,
Ovis Tamini and Ovis Dalli or Yukon sheep. The three latter species are very similar
and are often found in the same band. The Bighorn is found in the more southerly
pans, the Chilcotin district being a favourite range of theirs. The Ovis Stonei are
the most numerous of m.ountain sheep and are particularly plentiful in the Cassiar
district. The Yukon sheep are also widely distributed.

Mountain goats are very numerous all over the district where there are high
mountains. They are found in the Coast mountains adjacent to the Grand Trunk
Pacific railway and north and east of Prince George. They are also plentiful in the
Omineca and Cassiar districts.

Grizzly bears are plentiful in the mountains and northerly parts of the district.
The Naas, Skeena and Stikine rivers are said to afford good hunting for this ferocious



4g Central British Columbia

animal. Big game hunters Avill find in the grizzly a beast worthy of their highest


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