Marine Conservation

Herring Fest 2018 web2nd Annual HORNBY HERRINGFEST:  

MARCH 7-10, 2018

Hornby Islanders have expressed a lot of interest in the herring populations around our island and particularly in the herring spawn that happens at the end of February and early March every year. We know very little about these amazing fish and their importance in the marine eco-system.

To help us better understand these fish, last March, 2017, Conservancy Hornby Island presented a “Herring School” (please pardon the play on words) with three speakers who came from off island to present us with their knowledge, research and insights into herring: Don Pepper, Mimi Lam, and Tony Pitcher. The event was a great success, attracting more than 100 people to the school and to the “Herring Ball” in the evening.

The 2018 HerringFest topic is marine mammals. Our speakers are now confirmed:

Jackie Hildering, aka The Marine Detective, who has enthralled audiences and sold our our hall with her fascinating presentations; Dr. John Ford, author of Marine Mammals of British Columbia; and Dr. Andrew Trites, sea lion & seal expert. There will also be a 50/50 art exhibition and sale on the theme of the herring run. Half the proceeds will go to support CHI’s marine protection initiative, and half will go to the artists themselves. And of course we’ll all celebrate with the Herring Ball dance!

About the Hornby Island Marine Conservation Initiative

Goal and Purpose
The goal of this project is to protect and conserve marine values around Hornby Island. The purpose is to identify, collect data and map the marine ecological values around the Island, educate the public on Hornby and elsewhere on the importance of these values and create a strategy and consensus for marine conservation. We are reaching out to work with other organizations with the ultimate goal of creating a Hornby Island Marine Conservation Plan with the legal authority to implement the Plan.

Marine Values and Information Identification
Identifying the values and mapping them is the foundation of this project. A first draft of marine values that we propose need protection or identification are as follows:
1) Herring
2) Salmon
3) Ground fish (ling cod, rock fish, etc.)
4) Shellfish (Clams, oysters, crabs, scallop, abalone, geoducks)
5) Forage fish
6) Eel grass and kelp beds
7) First Nations traditional territories and cultural sites, e.g., shell middens, fish weir, petroglyphs, etc.,
8) Marine mammals (seals, sea lions, whales, otters)
9) Birds (ducks, eagles, loons, migratory birds, etc.) including nesting sites
10) Existing Aquaculture tenures
11) Existing zoning
12) Recreational use sites: e.g., Anchorages, beaches, viewscapes, etc.,

Mapping and Data Preparation
We are in the process of preparing the maps and data bases for the information about marine values around Hornby Island. The draft maps and database will be in an accessible form to inform the community and gather input. Maps and data are the foundation of a marine planning process.

Community Awareness and Involvement
It is essential that the people of Hornby Island, both full time and part time residents are part of the Marine Planning initiative process. The Hornby Island Community Fund has granted us 500 dollars to host an open house meeting/workshop at the Community Hall in fall 2016. At this open house, the community will sit down to decide what the layers of marine values that need conservation are. We provide a picture of each of these values through maps, power point, pictures, and data, and identify what has high value to the committee and the community.

Identifying and Implementing the Plan
First we will identify:
1) The final management objectives and the relevant authorities
2) Who has legal authority to implement and enforce marine conservation policies
3) What marine conservation already exists in the area and who has what authority for the policy development in this project at different levels of government
Following this we will:
1) Present Conservation Plan to the Community
2) Receive Community Input and Finalize the Plan
3) Implement and Monitor the Plan.


We are currently seeking funding from the following sources:
1. CHI and Hornby Community Members
2. Fundraising events on Hornby
3. Foundations
4. Governments, local, federal and provincial.

The estimated timeline for this project is 5 years.