Provincial scientists are asking for help as they investigate several unexpected white sturgeon deaths in the Lower Fraser and Nechako rivers.
Members of the public are asked to report any sightings of dead sturgeon.
Dead adult white sturgeon are occasionally observed on the Lower Fraser River, primarily in summer. Recent deaths are higher than expected, with 11 dead adult white sturgeon found over the past week in the Nechako River.
Provincial scientists have taken samples for laboratory testing, but they do not believe the fish died from disease, chemical exposure or because of angling or gill net fisheries. The fish show no visible signs of injury.
Staff at the Ministry of Land, Water and Resource Stewardship and the Ministry of Forests are in contact with local First Nations about these deaths.
White sturgeon in the Upper Fraser and Nechako rivers are listed under the Species at Risk Act as endangered. These fish are known to reach six metres long and to live for more than 100 years.
People are asked to report incidents and to include a photo of white sturgeon deaths in the Nechako region to Nikolaus Gantner at 250 649-2876, or email: Nikolaus.Gantner@gov.bc.ca