COQUITLAM, BC, July 22, 2021 – Visitors to Coquitlam’s parks can help protect their finned, feathered and furred inhabitants by using the City’s new fishing line waste bins and not feeding birds and wildlife.
Anglers are urged to use the new fishing line waste bins at Como and Lafarge lakes, installed earlier this month to protect birds and wildlife from getting tangled in discarded fishing line.
Residents may also not be aware that feeding birds and wildlife can do more harm than good and is illegal in Coquitlam city parks. New signage, reminding residents to not feed wildlife, will be installed in the coming weeks.
Discard your Fishing Line Safely at Coquitlam Lakes
Fishing line and hooks left in vegetation or discarded near lakes are a danger to birds and wildlife – regularly getting snagged on their beaks, wings, necks and other parts and becoming increasingly tangled as they fight to get free.
This often results in their death, as it can prevent them from feeding, flying or protecting themselves. Discarded lines are also unsightly and an environmental hazard because they do not biodegrade.
This summer, the City worked with the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC (GoFish BC) to install four fishing line bins at Como Lake in Como Lake Park and Lafarge Lake in Town Centre Park – two popular local fishing spots that are stocked in the spring and fall with rainbow trout of a catchable size.
Old hooks and lead may also be discarded in the bins along with line, which will be sorted and recycled through a program that has recycled 9 million miles of fishing line since the 1990s.
More Tips for Fishing Responsibly
Recreational Freshwater Fishing Licences are required for fishing at the City’s lakes for anyone age 16 and up. A Freshwater Fishing Licence for B.C. residents is $10 a day, or $36 for the year, through the B.C. government’s Freshwater Fishing E-Licensing system or a local licence vendor.
Other responsible fishing tips for those fishing in Coquitlam’s lakes:
- There is a two trout limit per day, and we ask to please not keep more fish than you can consume.
- If you catch-and-release your fish, keep them wet and let them go as quickly as possible.
- Treat fish humanely. If you keep your catch, kill it quickly. Keeping it live in a container is illegal.
- Cast safely – look behind you first and cast away from trees, walkways and trails.
- Avoid fishing in heavily vegetated areas as hooks and lines often become caught in branches. It is best to fish from docks or open areas.
- Leave your fishing spot cleaner than you found it – check around for garbage or discarded line.
Local fishing information is available on the Tourism Coquitlam website, www.visitcoquitlam.ca in the See & Do section. Information and resources can also be found at www.gofishbc.com.
Switch from Bird Feeding to Bird Watching
The age-old practice of feeding birds is not healthy for them and it also reduces their natural foraging instincts. Those who enjoy birds are encouraged to switch to bird watching and appreciate them from a distance.
Feeding birds and wildlife in City parks contravenes the City’s Wildlife and Vector Control Bylaw, for these and the following reasons:
- Human food, including bread, offer poor nutrition for ducks, geese and other wildlife.
- Leftover food attracts rats, raccoons, bears and other pests and wildlife.
- Birds and animals that become reliant on human food may become aggressive to people.
More information about the Wildlife and Vector Control Bylaw can be found at www.coquitlam.ca/bylaws. Additional information is also found at www.coquitlam.ca/urbanwildlife.
Urban Forestry & Parks Services Manager
City of Coquitlam