The moat at the Kootenay Trout Hatchery near Cranbrook, where a group of pesky river otters were fishing for meals in the summer of 2019. (Courtesy of Owen Schoenberger)

Trout ‘doing quite well’ at Kootenay hatchery after otters, who ate 150 fish, relocated

River otters had been pillaging a moat outside the facility for months, gobbling up about 150 trout

Staff at a fish hatchery in B.C.’s East Kootenay are no longer having to fend off otters that were attacking and eating their fish, now that the animals have been relocated.

Last June, the Kootenay Trout Hatchery in in the Fort Steele area, outside of Cranbrook, reported that a group of pesky otters had devoured about 150 of the prized fish and attacked many others in the hatchery’s moat.

Manager Owen Schoenberger said three otters were trapped and relocated outside of the Kootenay watershed by conservation officers, after staff tried and failed to block some of the access to the moat and even installed barrier panels.

“We kept the injured fish in the back pond; they had some wounds and some scars,” he said. “We treated them with a special bath which was successful and we returned them to the moat. The fish are doing quite well now, and we’re well stocked especially after putting in extra yearlings.”

READ MORE: Otters devour 150 trout at Kootenay hatchery

The otters haven’t been spotted at the hatchery since, Schoenberger said.

The facility has about 30 to 40 15-pound rainbow trout at present, as well as several hundred one- to two-pound rainbow trout. It’s run by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC, which owns and operates hatcheries in Duncan, Abbotsford, Summerland, Clearwater, Fort Steele and Vanderhoof.

READ MORE: Staff relocating koi away from hungry otter at Vancouver Chinese garden



corey.bullock@cranbrooktownsman.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

fishingWildlife

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Castlegar wedding shows love conquers all

Brandon Melanson and Kimberly Patricia Melanson were married at Millennium Park last week.

Selkirk College starts COVID-19 emergency fund for students

The college has set aside up to $30,000 in matching funds for donations

Relief coming for City of Castlegar water and sewer bills

Due dates for utility bills pushed back to July.

FortisBC offers 90-day bill deferrals to customers impacted by COVID-19

Customers can apply for the relief program through the utility’s website

Regional District of Central Kootenay changes services due to COVID-19

Building inspections and GIS services are some of the services impacted

Canadians awake to extra COVID-19 emergency benefit money, fear it’s a mistake

The CRA and federal officials are working to clarify the confusion around payments

More than 400 animals have been adopted amid pandemic: B.C. SPCA

People are taking this time of social distancing to find a loyal companion through the animal welfare group

B.C. secures motel, hotel rooms for COVID-19 shelter space

Community centres, rooms reserved for pandemic self-isolation

Sanders drops 2020 bid, leaving Biden as likely nominee

Sanders plans to talk to his supporters later Wednesday

B.C. faith leaders, Horgan discuss need for virtual religious ceremonies

Leaders were open to providing other ways to celebrate during the pandemic

Emergency COVID-19 funding now available for children with special needs

Funding to be used to help support families through uncertain times of pandemic

Revenue dip needed to qualify for wage subsidy drops to 15% in March: Trudeau

Wage subsidy would over 75% of each employee’s salary for qualifying businesses

B.C. closes all provincial parks for COVID-19 protection

Easter weekend approaches, camping already closed

Most Read