Ferry starting up Friday; still monitoring for fishing season

Sueann Musick, The New Glasgow News
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CARIBOU – At least one boat will be sailing into Caribou harbour Friday.

Northumberland Ferries

Northumberland Ferries Limited confirmed Wednesday that it will begin its regular season schedule Friday after being delayed for a week because of heavy ice conditions. However, the schedule will continue to be restricted until navigation conditions return to normal.

The ferry service between Caribou, N.S., and Wood Islands, P.E.I., will be as follows:

Caribou departures: 8 a.m., 11:45 a.m. 2:45 p.m. and 6:15 p.m.

Wood Island departures: 6:30 a.m., 9:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Meanwhile, the local lobster fishery will remain closed until further notice. Fishing in Area 26A usually begins May 1, but ice has delayed the start of this as well.

“The safety of fish harvesters and our fishery officers is a priority for DFO and a key factor in the opening of the fishery. Conference calls are being held regularly with fishing associations to determine opening dates that will allow for safe fishing activity for harvesters from harbours across the region,” said Fisheries and Oceans communications spokeswoman Krista Petersen.

She said DFO is also in regular contact with the Canadian Coast Guard, Environment Canada and Transport Canada to discuss the opening of the fishery. Factors that must be considered include weather and ice conditions, the placement of buoys and the availability of search and rescue vessels.

The Prince Edward Island Fishermen’s Association, which has lobster fishermen in Area 26A, posted an update on its Facebook page Wednesday afternoon saying that another conference call with DFO will take place Friday and if the ice conditions improve, the recommendation for the earliest possible opening is Monday, May 11.

Fishermen in Area 23, which encompasses fisheries off the coast of New Brunswick, will be able to go out Friday.

Fisheries is also opening Area 24 Friday, which encompasses the northern tip of P.E.I.

Organizations: DFO, Canadian Coast Guard, Environment Canada Transport Canada

Geographic location: Caribou, Wood Islands, Wood Island Prince Edward Island Fishermen New Brunswick P.E.I.

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