Letters: Dam important

Writer questions the DFO's decision to dismantle Bill James dam on Demamiel Creek

Dam important

Does DFO really stand for Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans? Or is DFO an acronym for some other group?

We have lived on De Mamiel Creek since 1976. My kitchen looks down on the stream and we have enjoyed for years and years the fall salmon runs. In the beginning we (if we chose) could have walked across the creek on the backs of those salmon. Their numbers were vast and literally uncountable. I do not know the type of salmon that were/are in the system, I just know there were so many.

Over the years those numbers have dwindled and we now take great comfort in the fact that the volunteers from the Sooke Salmon Enhancement Society capture and take the eggs and sperm to the hatchery  ensuring future generations of fish.

As the numbers of fish dwindled the urgency to protect and ensure those future generations of fish was front and foremost in the DFO’s mandate. There were a few years where DFO actually cleared a rough path along side the creek and hand fed the fry that were locked in pools as the water levels dropped over the summer months. If it was that important then what is happening now?

How would this appear for a headline in a visit Sooke flyer – A beautiful oceanside town built on a history of fishing and logging – where the DFO disregards and endangers the salmon populations? (The logging part is another letter altogether.)

With the removal of the Bill James Dam, the stress on the creek could well be insurmountable.Our weather is changing —  summers and winters with little rain. How will the fry survive? This stress is compounded by the fact that CRD will not allow developers to bring city water into the Otter Point District due to existing growth strategy rules. By forbidding the water, developers are forced to dig wells, surface or deep, which only further compounds the stress on the creek.

These wells pull ground water from the water table stopping the surface waters from replenishing the creeks.

We are definitely concerned as there appears to be an obvious lack of that valuable ground water now  — as we are witnessing trucks hauling potable water  to homes in our district 12 months of the year.

My question to the DFO is, what are/were you thinking?

Lexa J. Gollmer

Sooke