NB Wildlife Federation calls on Ottawa to turf hook and release salmon rules

The New Brunswick Wildlife Federation wants Ottawa to lighten up when it comes to salmon angling on the province`s rivers.

Federation President Charles LeBlanc says anglers play an important role in contributing to local river-side communities and that there are fewer of them hitting the water since mandatory hook and release rules were introduced in 2015.

LeBlanc says fewer anglers mean less eyes and ears on local rivers to deter poaching, and that fewer youngsters are being introduced to the sport.

He says there`s no conservation merit in the hook and release measures and is calling on the federal government to return to 2014 regulations unless the Department of Fisheries and Oceans provides scientific evidence that the request is unreasonable.