Sooke Chinook Sea Pen Project

Proceeds from the Oak Bay Marine Group Juan De Fuca Fishing Tournament are used to help fund the Sooke Chinook Sea Pen Project. In May of 2017 we received our 225,000 Chinook smolts from the Nitinat Hatchery. We held these fish for 3 weeks in our marine enclosure. This acclimatized them to salt water and imprinted them to the fresh water scent of the Sooke River, ensuring they would return back to the Sooke Harbour. They were monitored constantly, fed twice daily and then released in the dark of night while predators were absent. 100,000 of these smolts were clipped and wire code tagged so that their survival rate through the rest of their life can be monitored. These fish will return as adults in 4 years and will help provide a vital food supply for our southern resident killer whales while they forage in Juan De Fuca Strait.

Our 2017 project costs were approximately $85,000.00.  A big thank you to Glen Varney and all the volunteers who helped care for and feed the fish on a daily basis and for maintaining and cleaning the marine enclosure. All the hard work paid off with amazing results and a very high rate of survival through a critical stage in their life cycle.

In May of 2018 we will be releasing 500,000 Chinook smolts and we are working towards our maximum production of 2 million Chinook smolts by 2020 and the same each year afterwards. More info about this ongoing effort can be found at:

If you wish to make a private or corporate donation to this project you can contact Rollie Rose or Chris Bos. Contact information is found in the contact tab on the home page.

Our 50ft X 50ft marine enclosure located at Sooke Harbour Resort & Marina (May 2017)

Our 225,000 Chinook smolts arriving at Sooke Harbour Resort & Marina

Our fish just about to drop our of the 600 ft of hose and out into the marine enclosure