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Around $500,000 worth of baby eels seized at Toronto Pearson Airport

Click to play video: 'Baby eel poaching causing frustration in Canada’s maritime provinces'
Baby eel poaching causing frustration in Canada’s maritime provinces
WATCH RELATED VIDEO: Elvers, or baby eels, weigh only a few grams, but make up a multi-billion dollar industry. Since March 6, 34 people have been arrested and more than six kilograms of the lucrative were fish confiscated after the fishing season on Canada’s east coast was cancelled. As Heidi Petracek reports, licensed fishers say enforcement isn’t keeping up with the illegal harvest – Mar 24, 2024

Federal officials say 109 kilograms of unauthorized baby eels, or elvers, were seized at Toronto Pearson International Airport on Wednesday.

The search was carried out by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) and the Canada Border Services Agency.

According to officials, the elvers destined to be shipped overseas were worth between $400,000 and $500,000.

Earlier this year in March, the DFO announced it would not be reopening the elver fishery due to safety and conservation concerns.

An investigation into this matter, for violations under the Fisheries Act, is now underway.

Federal data shows 149 people have been arrested for elver-related crimes, and nearly 208 kilograms of elvers have been seized so far this year.

— with files from The Canadian Press

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