William and Kate trout of luck on Canada fishing trip


The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge went salmon fishing in Canadian waters threatened by a controversial liquid natural gas project - but did not get a bite.

Despite William and Kate's lack of success with rod and line they did catch some sea food, large crabs pulled from a trap left in the pristine waters around the Haida Gwaii archipelago.

And the Duke - a passionate wildlife conservationist - and Duchess were given scarves trimmed with sea otter fur as a mark of respect by the area's Haida people.

The royal couple had travelled into the heart of the Haida nation in a 25ft war canoe to celebrate the culture of the indigenous people.

But there were protests from residents who claim a multi-billion pound LNG pipeline and export terminal will have a detrimental effect on the environment.

The administration of Canada's prime minister Justin Trudeau, who famously has a tattoo of planet Earth inside a Haida raven on his left bicep, gave the green light for the Pacific NorthWest LNG export terminal just a few days ago.

The timing of the LNG announcement put the Haidi people in a difficult position as they did not want to forgo their traditional warm welcome for the royal couple, so staged a silent protest with only a handful of people holding placards.

Surrounded by the stunning mountains and forests of the Haida Gwaii William and Kate - who wore a red Really Wild Clothing jumper, blouse by Somerset by Temperley, and Zara jeans - went fishing on the waters of the Hecate Strait with four teenagers from the Skidegate Youth Centre.

The lure of lines baited with anchovies did not entice the salmon but the couple appeared to enjoy their 45 minutes out on the water and they still got to see a local fish up close.

A large previously-caught salmon was produced from a cool box and held up by the fishing guide Randy Pryce and everyone clapped.

When three large Dungeness crabs were pulled from the trap Kate asked the guide if she could hold one, and she and William both handled the crustacean and the royal joked with her husband saying about his: "That one's lively."

Earlier William and Kate had worked in unison with the other paddlers propelling the Haida war canoe that landed them on a pebble beach at Skidegate on Graham Island.

As they walked to the nearby Haida Gwaii Museum, where they received a cultural welcome, a handful of LNG protestors, were standing on a ridge overlooking the building among dozens of schoolchildren who wore orange tops.

They were taking part in Orange Shirt Day an annual event recognising the harm inflicted by the residential school system, in the period before the mid 1970s, to the esteem and well being of indigenous children.

During the welcoming ceremony in the museum the Cambridges were presented with their sea otter trimmed scarves

Otters were hunted to extinction for their pelts in the 19th century and were reintroduced in the second half of the 20th century and have gone on to flourish.

William has campaigned for the end of the illegal trade in wildlife parts like elephant ivory, rhino horn and shark fins.

William tried speaking the local language and said to the assembled guests in the museum: "Aan t'alang isis ska-wada-gee id ga dalang kil laa, haaw - Thank you very much for having us here."

He added: "The historic link between the Crown and the First Nations people is strong, and something that I hold dear to my heart.

"And so it is an honour for me to be here with you, to see that your traditions remain strong."

During their visit to Haida Gwaii the royal couple opened the new Haida Gwaii Hospital and Health Centre which will soon begin treating patients.

William and Kate's tour of Canada ends on Saturday and they will begin by visiting the Cridge Centre for the Family - one of Victoria's most well-known charitable institutions.

The centre provides a range of services, including childcare, youth outreach, and support for women who have experienced domestic violence.

The Duke and Duchess will then visit a local cafe where they will meet families who have been supported by the Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre, one of British Columbia's leading mental health charities.

They will board a tall-ship operated by the Sail and Life Training Society, a charity that uses the power of sailing to give young people skills and direction in their lives.

On board will be a group of young people who are part of JACK.org - a national network of youth who are working to end stigma around mental health for their generation.

Later the Cambridges and their children end their tour with an official departure ceremony at Victoria Harbour Airport.