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Another First Nation in Nova Scotia set to start self-regulated lobster fishery

Last Updated Sep 30, 2020 at 3:24 pm EDT

A warrior flag flies as members of the Sipekne'katik First Nation gather on the wharf in Saulnierville, N.S., to bless the fleet before it launches its own self-regulated fishery on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020. The First Nation says a 1999 Supreme Court of Canada ruling, known as the Marshall decision, granted the Mi'kmaq the right to catch and sell lobster outside of the regular fishing season. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

HALIFAX — A First Nation in southern Cape Breton is set to become the second Indigenous band in Nova Scotia to launch a self-regulated commercial lobster fishery that will operate outside the regular fishing season.

The  Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaw Chiefs issued a statement today saying fishers from the Potlotek First Nation plan to head out on the waters of St. Peters Bay on Thursday.

The assembly says the fishers plan to exercise their inherent right to fish for a moderate livelihood, as spelled out in a 1999 Supreme Court of Canada decision.

Chief Wilbert Marshall told CBC in September that about 10 licensed fishermen were expected to each use about 70 traps.

Most of the non-Indigenous lobster fishermen in the area are represented the Richmond Country Inshore Fishermen’s Association, but no one from that organization was willing to offer comments today.

Meanwhile, the Sipekne’katik First Nation in western Nova Scotia has faced protests from non-Indigenous fisherman after the band launched its own self-regulated lobster fishery on Sept. 17.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 30, 2020

The Canadian Press