Marine Conservation


Please watch our video, Pacific Herring: Small Fish – Big Problem to find out why.

Several Members of Parliament in Ottawa and Members of the Legislative Assembly in Victoria are also concerned. We need your support to help them put an end to this destructive fishery.

See the key points, below, and please write, email and/or phone them to show your support for the closure (Note: Mail may be sent postage-free to any Member of Parliament.)

I support the closure of the Pacific herring roe fishery in the Strait of Georgia because:

  • Herring are a critical food source for Salmon and therefore Killer whales as well all the other sea creatures on Canada’s west coast
  • Herring are a crucial part of the First Nations diet. They have used the fish and their roe sustainably for thousands of years.
  • Compared to the economic value of the salmon sports fishery and whale watching that ultimately rely on healthy herring stocks, there is very little economic value in the herring roe fishery
  • This is the last of six major herring spawns on the coast: let’s protect it!


The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson 
Minister, Fisheries and Oceans Canada
200 Kent St Station 15N100
Ottawa ON  K1A 0E6

Gord Johns, MP for Courtenay-Alberni 
c/o Ms Sarah Thomas
Parliamentary Office, 1209 E. Island Highway, Suite 12,
Parksville BC, V9P 1R5
(250) 947-2140

The Honourable Scott Fraser, MLA, Mid Island-Pacific Rim
3945 Johnston Rd, Port Alberni, BC V9Y 5N4
(250) 720 4515

The Honourable Lana Popham, MLA, Minister of Agriculture
260 – 4243 Glanford Avenue
Victoria, BC   V8Z 4B9
(250) 387-1023

Fin Donnelly, MP, NDP Critic for Fisheries, Oceans and Coast Guard
House of Commons, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0A6

For more information contact:
Cath Gray, Conservancy Hornby Island Administrator,

WEB HerringFest 2018 final posterOur second annual HerringFest held Marcy 7-10 was a great success thanks to a fabulous team of volunteers, engaging speakers and generous donors.
Check out Anthony Gregson’s article, “Serious Fun at the HerringFest“, published by the Islands Grapevine.

“The two presentations on killer whales and sea lions I saw were models for teaching and learning: informative, funny, lucid, well-paced, and fun. The atmospherics at the hall was friendly and engaged, with a fine mix of new and familiar faces.” – Keith Harrison

“It was a terrific festival and you deserve big congratulations.  It was a great pleasure for me to be included and for me to be there”. – Bristol Foster

“That was a terrific Herring Festival! I truly believe that CHI is … making a difference in raising the awareness of the public about herring and the ecosystem they support. I thought all three featured speakers were absolutely terrific…” – Don Peterson

HerringFest 2019 will be held March 6-9, 2019.

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.