This notice is for informational purposes only. There is no requirement to consult on this initiative on the Environmental Registry of Ontario. Learn more about the types of notices on the registry.
Why consultation isn't required
The proposed change is to the Ontario Fishery Regulations, 2007. Since this is a regulation under the federal Fisheries Act, it is not prescribed under the Environmental Bill of Rights.
We are using this Information Bulletin to seek public feedback on the proposal until July 29, 2019.
Common Carp (Cyprinus carpio) are not native to Ontario; they were introduced to North America from Europe over 100 years ago. Their ability to adapt to a range of environments, as well as their ability to thrive in shallow, warm-water lakes and rivers, has allowed them to establish abundant populations across much of southern Ontario and they are considered a naturalized species. Their large size (15-20 kilograms) and abundance provide excellent fishing opportunities for anglers in Ontario.
We are proposing an amendment to the Ontario Fishery Regulations that would allow the use of multiple lines when fishing for Common Carp. Currently, anglers in Ontario are limited to the use of a single line unless fishing from a boat in parts of the Great Lakes or through the ice. Where multiple lines are currently permitted, they can be used to target any species with an open-season.
We are also proposing to clarify the regulations associated with baiting, or ‘chumming’, while angling. These regulations would apply to anglers targeting any species regardless of the number of lines they are using.
Anglers and stakeholders have asked for the use of multiple lines to be permitted to make Ontario regulations more consistent with other jurisdictions, and to allow anglers to have greater success when fishing for Common Carp in Ontario.
Based on previous discussions with anglers and stakeholders regarding the use of multiple lines, we have identified the potential for increased harvest mortality of sport fish species and increased crowding as potential risks associated with the use of multiple lines.
Based on feedback from anglers, the ministry has developed a framework for this regulatory proposal to manage the risks of this regulatory change. We are seeking feedback on this proposal. Specifically, we are interested in your feedback on:
- the areas where multiple lines should be permitted for Common Carp
- the maximum number of lines that an angler should be permitted when angling for Common Carp;
- the maximum distance that an angler could be from their lines and/or the maximum distance between lines
- the types of baits that are permitted when fishing for Common Carp
- whether using multiple lines for Common Carp should be permitted when fishing from shore, from a boat, or both.
Additionally, we are proposing to clarify existing regulations as they relate to baiting an area (known as ‘chumming’). This is the practice of luring fish to an area by throwing organic materials into the water, a practice that is popular among Common Carp anglers. This clarification would apply to all anglers.
Changes of this nature to Ontario’s recreational fishing regulations require a regulation change by Fisheries and Oceans Canada.
Purpose of Policy
1. Multiple Lines for Common Carp
The proposal would be to allow the use of multiple lines when fishing from shore or a boat for Common Carp in southern and central Ontario. Specifically, this includes Fisheries Management Zones 12 to 20. These are the Fisheries Management Zones in Ontario that currently offer reasonable fishing opportunities for Common Carp.
The ministry has evaluated several options to address ecological and social concerns associated with the use of multiple lines. Many of these concerns can be mitigated by including the following conditions on the use of multiple lines:
- Reduce the risk of catching non-target species by restricting the baits and lures anglers can use when fishing with multiple lines to those most commonly used when fishing for Common Carp. Organic baits (doughballs) would be permitted, but the use of artificial lures, artificial flies, dead fish, baitfish, leeches, frogs, crayfish, worms and roe would be prohibited. These restrictions would only apply when fishing with multiple lines and would not impact anglers fishing with a single line for Common Carp (or any other species).
- Reduce the risk of crowding by requiring anglers to remain near their lines and/or restrict the maximum distance between lines. These conditions would reduce the footprint occupied by individual anglers.
The restrictions noted above would apply to all lines being used by an angler when fishing with multiple lines.
Under this proposal, there would be no changes for anglers fishing with a single line, or to existing multiple-line regulations through the ice or on the Great Lakes from a boat.
2. Baiting (Chumming)
In addition to the proposal to allow the use of multiple lines while fishing for Common Carp, the ministry is proposing to clarify the existing regulations as they relate to baiting an area (also known as chumming). This is a practice of luring fish to an area by throwing organic materials into the water, which is a very common practice amongst Common Carp anglers. Currently, it is unlawful to empty the contents of a bait bucket or any other container used to hold bait, including the water, into any waters or within 30 meters of any waters. This regulation was implemented to reduce the risks associated with the spreading invasive species and fish pathogens. It is also intended to ensure responsible use of natural resources.
Chumming with baits proposed to be permitted when using multiple lines (organic, non-animal baits) presents little risk of spreading invasive species or fish pathogens. Chumming using live or dead fish, baitfish, leeches, frogs, crayfish, worms and roe would be prohibited. The ministry may use the feedback received on this proposal to refine what would be permitted for baiting or chumming.
This proposal would clarify the baits permitted for ‘chumming’ and would apply to all anglers regardless of the number of lines they are using.
Comments can be sent to email@example.com, or at the address and phone number listed in the contact section, until July 29, 2019.
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