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Review of the Fisheries of 1921

The fishing industry was carried on during the year 1921 under the most trying conditions. The marketing of fish and fish products was found to be difficult, and prices fell to a figure which made it unprofitable for fishermen, in some districts of the Atlantic coast especially, to carry on. Production was thus much less than it otherwise would have been. It is not very surprising, therefore, to find that the marketed value of all fish and fish products for the year under review- amounted to $34,931,935. This total, which is the lowest since 1914, is over $14,000,000 less than for 1920, and $25,000,000 less than the peak value which was reached in the year 1918.


On the face of it this big decrease is a very serious one, but there are already abundant signs of improved marketing conditions for the product of the 1922 season, and it may be confidently assumed that the annual value of our fisheries has not only touched rock bottom, but will begin to rise steadily if more slowly than under the artificial conditions brought about by the late war. The total value for, 1921 and that for 1920 was contributed to by the various provinces as follows:

1920   1921

Nova Scotia    $ 12,742,659   9 9,778,623

New Brunswick    4,423,745   3,690,726

Prince Edward Island    1,708,723   924,529

Quebec    2,592,382   1,815,284

Ontario    3,336,412   3,065,042

Manitoba    1,249,607   1,023,187

Saskatchewan    296,472   243,018

Alberta    529,078   408,868

British Columbia    22,329,161   13,953,670

Yukon    33,100   28,988

   $49,241,339   $34,931,935 ATLANTIC FISHERIES

Cod, Hake, Haddock and Pollock.—Owing to low prices and poor marketing conditions the aggregate catch of the four kinds named for 1921 was 2,509,928 cwt., against 2,707,059 cwt. for the preceding year. Hake, pollock and haddock, chiefly the last named, were accountable for the decrease. The landings of the Lunenburg Bank fishing fleet were rather less than in the preceding year. This was due to the fact that fewer vessels were engaged in the fishery. The average catch per vessel was actually greater than for many years.


Mackerel, Herring and Sardines.—Mackerel were generally more abundant than in the preceding year. The quantity landed in Nova Scotia, New Bruns-wick and Prince Edward Island, in the aggregate was approximately 18,000 cwt. greater, but this increase was almost neutralized by a decrease of 15,000 cwt. in the Quebec catch, mainly at the Magdalen Islands.


Low prices and a poor demand for smoked round herring adversely affected the herring fishery. The total catch amounted to 637,414 cwt., against 935,122 cwt. for the preceding year. All the provinces shared in the decrease.


The sardine catch of the Bay of Fundy was the smallest for many years. As a result of the still disorganized state of the canned sardine trade the packers had difficulty in marketing the packs of the three preceding years. Consequently, prices were low and fishermen found it unremunerative to operate their weirs.


Other Sea Fish.—The halibut catch was greater by 7,600 cwt., while the catch of swordfish was more than double that for the preceding year. Albacore, flounders and tomcod were taken in about the average quantities.


Shell-fish.---T he lobster fishery suffered considerably from inactivity as a result of the low prices, which caused a number of fishermen to cease operating. While the total catch was 6,360 cwt. less than that for the preceding year, some of the provinces actually produced a greater quantity. There was a decrease


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