For Immediate Release
Over the past three weeks, the BC Wildlife Federation and partners have engaged various levels of government and the Provincial Health Officer to advocate the benefits of hunting, fishing and enjoying supernatural BC within the constraints of COVID-19. In consultation with the Provincial Health Officer (PHO), the provincial government recently added hunting and fishing to the “List of COVID-19 Essential Services“. This is great news, but also means we all need to be cognizant of how COVID-19 has changed responsible fishing and hunting practices.
“We are happy hunting and fishing are now listed as essential services. With this listing comes great responsibility and a degree of scrutiny; as responsible citizens and conservationists, we need to ensure these activities are conducted within the guidelines set out by the PHO,” said Bill Bosch, President of the BC Wildlife Federation.
British Columbia’s regulatory framework ensures licensed hunting and angling is sustainable. As we see an uptick in license sales, hunters and anglers should ensure they are familiar with the regulations.
The BCWF asks licensed hunters and anglers to inform themselves with regards to the PHO guidelines. Advice and information on hunting and fishing responsibly can be found on the BCWF website and the BC Government website. Jesse Zeman, director of Fish and Wildlife Restoration, shares a few tips in this recent op-ed published in the Castanet.
The BC Wildlife Federation will continue to advocate on behalf of hikers, hunters and anglers with various levels of government. The BCWF believes the provincial government should be finding ways to allow British Columbians to stay local, get outside safely and enjoy our public spaces, especially in provincial parks. It is imperative that British Columbians have access to outdoor areas to secure healthy, organic protein, and give them a physical and mental reprieve from the effects of COVID-19.
Every year British Columbians purchase 110,000 hunting licenses, 280,000 freshwater angling licenses and 260,000 saltwater angling licenses. Your fellow hunters and anglers are counting on you to be responsible, so that we can all enjoy these activities through these challenging times. Please stay safe, and be responsible.
Refer to our Infographic for best practices and tips on how to still enjoy fishing and hunting activities during this time:
Download our Infographic so you can share with your family and friends here!