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The Skeena Fisheries Commission (SFC) has been working with the Gitksan Watershed Authorities to develop an autonomous camera salmon counting fence that could be used in remote systems with a focus on the Bear River. The Bear River, a major tributary to the Skeena River, is a significant producer of wild sockeye, Chinook and coho salmon. Arial salmon escapement enumeration techniques are not accurate for estimating sockeye abundance in the Bear Lake system as a large proportion of the sockeye returning to this system are lake spawners.

In collaboration with Gitanyow Fisheries Authority, the customized camera and infrastructure to be used remotely was tested on the Kitwanga River in 2020. This allowed for some problem solving and resulted in successful outputs as well as the added benefit of counting sockeye when the high waters led to breached periods at the adult salmon fence. We look forward to the possibilities this brings to further watersheds to improve enumeration techniques where factors of remoteness and fish handing may be need to be addressed.