Closure of Edziza Caribou LEH Season

Regulation Number: 
2020-06-03
Status: 
Decided
Region: 
Region 6 - Skeena
MU: 
6-21
Regulation Type: 
Limited Entry Hunting
Species: 
Caribou
Closing Date: 
January 19, 2020 at midnight
Decision Statement: 

This regulation was approved as proposed and is included in the 2020-2022 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Synopsis.

Current Regulations: 

There is currently an Aug 15-Oct 15 Limited Entry Hunt for the Mount Edziza caribou herd (within a portion of MU 6-21)

Proposed Regulations: 

Removal of the Caribou hunting opportunity in MU 6-21A for all licensed hunters.

Rationale: 

Recent survey data (2017 rut composition survey) found fewer caribou than expected. During the 2017 fall composition survey, 23 caribou were observed during a combination of fixed wing and helicopter survey that covered the majority of the range. The previous survey in March of 2006 found 151 caribou. This population has never had more than 151 caribou observed on surveys going back as far as 1972 and appears to be naturally small.

Harvest data shows no resident hunter harvest in MU 6-21 since 2006, prior to that the last kill was in 1984 (see graph). Guided hunters have had a higher harvest, likely due to access to more remote portions of the range on horseback.

The best available science suggests that caribou population of fewer than 200 should not be hunted; given the apparent decline in this population it is recommended to close the hunt.