Responding to dry conditions, the province has announced a level four drought rating for parts Vancouver Island – the highest drought alert.
Due to low rainfall and record high temperatures from north of Campbell River down the east coast of Vancouver Island, all the way to Greater Victoria have forced the province to increase the drought rating.
The drought has lowered water levels and reduced flow in rivers and streams which is prompting the province to close down the freshwater sports fishery across much of the southern Vancouver Island starting July 1, 2016.
Big Qualicum, Puntledge and Quinsam Rivers will remain open, along with Campbell River and all streams north of the City of Campbell River and Bamfield – click here for map of closures.
Residents in these regions are also encouraged to reduce water consumption.
At level four, conditions are extremely dry. Further declines in stream, lake and aquifer levels could lead to water shortages and affect people, industry such as agriculture, wildlife, and fish stocks, the province said.
The fishing closures will remain in place until drought conditions improve significantly.