No squid angler has yet cast a line in the Magdalen Islands

There are several reasons why none of Quebec’s 14 squid license holders, all Madelinos, have yet set sail despite the July 18 reopening of the fishery.

First, not everyone is interested in trying to catch this little-known species this year. According to information collected by Radio-Canada, about a third of license holders intend to go to sea in the near future.

In addition, some are still waiting to receive jigs, that is, a type of hook suitable for catching cephalopods. Fishermen had to turn to suppliers from Newfoundland or St. Pierre and Miquelon, since there is no such equipment in the Madelino archipelago.

This is the case of fisherman Réjean Vigneault, who is still waiting for his fishing gear.

I ordered some jigs to go have a look and poke around a bithe said. turluttes autorisées, ça va être très difficile de rentabiliser ça.”,”text”:”Je prévois faire des sorties, mais je ne sais pas encore quand. Avec seulement 200turluttes autorisées, ça va être très difficile de rentabiliser ça.”}}”>I plan to get out, but I don’t know when yet. With only 200 authorized jigs, it will be very difficult to make it profitable.

In addition, fishermen do not yet know if the squid has actually entered the bay or where it is, making sea travel much more risky.

We are all in the unknownsays Mr. Vigneault, recalling that no fisherman has caught squid in the Madelino Archipelago in decades. The Gulf of St. Lawrence is very large.

Our grandfathers, who caught squid, have few left to tell how they caught it– adds Ghislaine Cyr, another permit holder.

Ghislaine Cyr plans to make several sea trips to try to find squid, but he does not plan to put too much effort into the fishery, particularly because of the high cost of diesel (archives).

Photo: Radio-Canada / Elisa Serret

It is not known where the squid is. I’ll try to go and have a look, but it’s still a significant expense if you’re thinking about diesel for boats and equipmentadds Mr. Sear, who also catches halibut and crabs. No one has told me that they caught squid or saw squid anywhere this year, he adds. It is difficult to say that we are going somewhere and will find squid.

There is a risk of walking around all day without finding it, spending $1000 on diesel and not getting any results. »

Quote from Ghislaine Cyr, fisherman

According to Mr Cyr, the conditions of use associated with certain fishing licenses prevent the combination of catches of different species on a single voyage, making it difficult to find squid and gain knowledge about the species.

14″,”text”:”Si tu vas au flétan, tu as seulement le droit d’avoir des hameçons numéro14″}}”>If you fish for halibut, you are only allowed to have #14 hooksexplains the fisherman from L’Étang-du-Nord. There should be no hooks on board the boat other than jigs. So, I can’t check for squid when I eat halibut, although it might help me keep my costs down.

In the past, when we wanted to try something, we would go and try all our hooks, but it doesn’t work the same way these days.– complains Ghislaine Cyr.

A tank full of squid.

In Canada, the majority of squid license holders are located in Newfoundland and Nova Scotia (on file).

Photo: Radio Canada / Patrick Butler

Squid fishermen are also required to notify Fisheries and Oceans Canada by 7:00 p.m. the day before departure for each voyage, which precludes any organized escape on the same day.

We have special fishing conditionsMr. Syr complains. When we talk to our squid fishing friends in Newfoundland, we understand that they have never had these conditions.

Impatient restaurateurs

If fishermen don’t venture out to sea, restaurateurs are eagerly awaiting the first squid landings, according to the director of the Blue Fork Certification Program, which aims to promote local consumption of edibles from St. Lawrence.

restaurants gastronomiques de la province”,”text”:”On a reçu énormément de demandes de la part de restaurateurs et de poissonniers, notamment le nouveau collectif La table ronde qui regroupe 110restaurants gastronomiques de la province”}}”>We have received many requests from restaurateurs and fishmongers, in particular from the new collective La Table ronde, which unites 110 restaurants of haute cuisine in the province.– explains Sandra Gauthier. They are almost standing in front of my office, impatient and very interested to get this fishing.

Restaurant owners call me almost every day to find out news about squid fishing. »

Quote from Sandra Gauthier, Program Director, Fourchette bleue
Sandra Gauthier smiles in the photo.

Director of Exploramer and founder of Fourchette bleue certification Sandra Gauthier (archives)

Photo: Radio Canada / Cécile Gladel

Madelinan Poissons frais des Îles, based in Millerand on Havre-Haubert, says it is willing to buy squid from fishermen.

We will be ready if there are any squid landings, but at the moment we have no indication that there will be any in the near future.– says owner Christian Vigneault.

The fishing season will end on November 30.

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