Fish concerns shut down pumps at Craven
Organizers of Saskatchewan's biggest country music festival have stopped pumping water out of a flooded campsite after a visit from federal officials.
Four pumps that have been running since Saturday at the Craven Country Jamboree site north of Regina were shut down Monday after concerns were raised by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.
The concern, festival officials have been told, is that fish in the water could be harmed. Department officials offered several options that would save the fish.
"What we told them was, should they choose to proceed with dewatering the area, that they would have to initiate a fish salvage and would have to effectively remove the fish from that area, which is quite large," said Vincent Harper, a biologist with DFO.
Jamboree organizer Kim Blevins says camping will be moved to an alternate area and the show will still go on.
Last week, festival organizers said they needed to get water out of the site as soon as possible to be ready for campers next month.
Performers take the stage at the festival, a major tourist draw in Saskatchewan, on July 14.
The festival is located in the Qu'Appelle Valley where there has been major flooding this year due to heavy spring runoff and recent rains.
Usually, nearly 8,500 people stay during the event.
Where campers will go now has not been determined, but an announcement will be made within the next two days, Blevins said.
"We are finalizing an alternate camping site right now and as soon as we have that information, we will release it to the public," she said.