ExpOasis

ExpoOasis was Sunshine Coast participation in Expo’86, the six months world exposition with over 23. mill. visitors. Here I am with my close friend Arthur McGinnis, a gentleman extraordinaire. He built among other things, the Gibsons Marina, exclusive housing, the .. Marina project,  The Government Wharf in Skidegate on Queen Charlotte islands, The Wharf in Sechelt. He always built some major projects, and they all turned out good. But, he was also concerned about his community, and participated in many volunteer organizations.

In the tank is a Dog Fish. A shark. Not so much appreciated among the salmon sports fishermen in B.C. We took the liberty to rename it to ” Salmon Shark” for Expo. At a ceremony at the Bella Beach Motel in Davis bay, a Government official, Dave … broke a bottle of Champagne over a 8′ wood carving of a “Salmon Shark”. Save … cut his hand on the broken bottle so we had to get medical help.

We were afraid that the many visitors would get general restrictions on salmon fishing.

Two years earlier we had with serious discussions with federal fisheries officials, and they took an extra I think 2. mill. Coho eggs, and used catacomb like bunkers at the Capilano Hatchery, never  used before, and hatch all the coho to smolts, and released them for the extra demand on sports fishing during Espo’86. But other salmon species have different life cycles, and for Chinnok (Red or White Spring/Tyee) Salmon it was too late.

For the Sunshine Coast tourist Society we got the permit to have a lottery. To enter you had to purchase a Salmon Shark Sport Fishing Ticket, and any marina or bait shop around the Georgia Strait basin. We had earlier asked the Federal Fisheries to tag some dog fish, with visible ExpOasis tags on the back fin. We had tree colours. Golf, silver and bronze. The tagged fish was released in Georgia Strait, at various locations only known to them.

Anybody catching one with sports fishing means, brought it to a marina and registered the catch. We had insured the scheme with Lloyd’s of London, I think it cost $ 2.000 or so so bet that nobody caught a “Gold” tag Dog Fish, I can not remember how many of each colour. Nobody did, but lots of the smaller prices was paid out, and the whole scheme was a success.

I actually got the idea while fishing for salmon with a German visitor. He had never ever caught a fish in salt water, and not many in fresh water. I let him reel in the first bite, it was clearly a Dog Fish, heavy, some fighting, but not a salmon. When he got it to the boat, I grabbed a knife, pulled it up on the railing, cut the whole nose and mouth off, with the line, it was already destroyed by the teeth and skin. before letting it go, I stabbed it a few times to kill it properly, and let it go overboard, not even talking it in the boat.

My German friend was horrified. He could have attacked me, but I had a big knife. His first fish ever, his largest fish ever. He did not care at all that it was a Dog Fish. I had destroyed it it let it overboard. I never did that mistake again. For all future while having foreign visitor on board, European, Chinese, any; I let them play the Dog Fish as it is was the greatest catch, and bring the catch onboard, as much as I despised it.

Actually, when on deck, have a wooden board ready, put a heavy knife through the nose so it is tied to the board. make a small cut around the neck, all the way, and with a pair of pliers, pull the skin off. Forget that you can sell the shark fin, the tail, and the skin to China as Shark fin soup. Once the skin is off, gut the fish, don’t be surprised if you get some small live sharks from the belly, through them overboard and they swim away. Now just put it on ice with your other catch.

The Dog Fish releases the urine through the skin, and the meat smells ammonia very fast. If you do not take the skin off, you must soak the fish in vinegar ,like a beaver tail. Dog Fish has no bones, just cartledges, and is actually good to eat when prepared properly. A lot is sold as “Fish and Chips”, much because of cartledges, and no bones. Your Chinese friends will be grateful for the fins, and tails.

My Chinese brother Jeff Joe, even fried the salmon skin crisp, what a treat. I don’t know how he did  it, but man, it is good.

much more …..

 

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