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The oolichans are back in town

The oolichans are back in the rivers on the north coast.

After a slow start to the season, the oily fish is now back in force.

Jessica Hawryshyn is a fisheries biologist with the North Coast-Skeena First Nations Stewardship Society.

She says the oolichan are an important part of the environment.

She says oolichans stocks in the Fraser river and central coasts are very depressed.

And while the north coast food harvest fishery is relatively small,there are concerns about stocks due to by-catch and climate change.

She says the department of Fisheries and Oceans haven’t given the oolichan much attention because there isn’t a commercial fishery.

But First Nations groups have stepped up.

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