Remove Puntzi and Upper Chilcotin River Motor Vehicle Closed Area

Regulation Number: 
2020-05-09
Status: 
Decided
Region: 
Region 5 - Cariboo
MU: 
5-12
Regulation Type: 
Motor Vehicle Restrictions
Species: 
Moose
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: 

Portions of MU 5-12 were closed to motor vehicles for the purpose of hunting to mitigate concerns related to wildlife vulnerability during the 2017 wildfire season.

Proposed Regulations: 

Removal of the Puntzi and Upper Chilcotin River Motor Vehicle Closed Area

Rationale: 

The MU 5-12 Motor Vehicle for Hunting Prohibition has resulted in multiple unintended consequences including:

  • concentration of hunters, and subsequent concerns related to overharvest, into small areas along and adjacent to exempted roads;
  • prohibiting access to waterfowl hunting areas including Ducks Unlimited projects;
  • Negative impacts to property owners who live within the area.
  • Limiting ability of hunters and trappers to access these areas to hunt predators; which is likely to negatively impact the shared First Nations’ and Provincial Governments objectives to reduce predator populations in 5-12 to support Itcha – Ilgachuz caribou recovery.

In addition to these negative consequences resulting from the motor vehicle prohibition, a more effective tool to prevent overharvest (e.g., adjustment of LEH and Quota opportunities) has since been implemented, and as such, this motor vehicle restriction is no longer required to meet management objectives

Recent composition surveys in MU 5-12A and 5-12B indicate bull to cow ratios well above the provincial minimum target.  As well, the number of moose located per survey hour during the 2019 5-12B composition survey was considerably higher than during the 2017 5-12B composition survey.  An increase in moose located per survey hour may indicate that the moose population in 5-12B is increasing.  Anecdotal reports from some First Nations also suggest that the moose population in 5-12B has increased in recent years.  A comprehensive Stratified Random Block (SRB) survey is planned for 5-12B winter 2019/20.