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Dunlop Creek Smolt Fence


Dunlop Creek is a small creek that runs into Muchalaht Lake near the mouth of the Muchalaht River, about 25km north of Gold River. The Dunlop creek provides critical rearing habitat to Coho salmon – the only pacific salmon species that spends up to two years in fresh water before out migrating to the ocean. These fish eventually find their way into Nootka Sound via the Muchalat and Gold Rivers.


The Dunlop Creek fish fence was first built in 2002 in by the Gold River Streamkeepers (now the Nootka Sound Watershed Society) in partnership with Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. The purpose of this fence is to trap fish species swimming down river in order to count them. Every year, the fence is installed in early May until the end of June. During this time, Nootka Sound Watershed Society volunteers visit the fence each day to count, measure, and release any fish trapped by the fence. The data collected provides us with important information regarding the health of the coho population in the Gold River watershed.

For more information on this project, and for ways you can get involved, please contact

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