Hi Salmon Chaser,
Although the Greenland buyout should certainly be considered a 'success', in that a significant harvest of wild fish no longer exists, I think the concensus among the scientific community is that the expected improvement in North American river stocks has been disappointing. I think the buyout was definitely a success, in the sense that a great model has been established for future international cooperation in Salmon conservation.
In trying to evaluate the 'big picture', I tend to be skeptical of anecdotal reports from other anglers, and resident 'locals', although I love Fish Stories as much as the next guy
. The anglers (I are one!) are always enthusiastic after a good trip and catching a bunch of fish, and it's too easy to infer that a river is healthy after hearing/reading a few such reports.(And fishermen who have a Skunk trip tend to be a lot less talkative, I think). Resident 'locals', particularly those with an economic interest in the reputation of the fishery, will very seldom admit to a 'bad year', in my experience.
Here's the NF/Labrador 2003 Stock Status Update- there are some bright spots, but overall, not all that promising, IMHO.
I fished in NF/ Labrador five weeks last year (the last trip ended Aug.29), and I'd say the fishing was about the same as 2002 overall, not as good as '98-01. But, I'm just one angler, only in one river at a time (and maybe the wrong/right time), if you know what I mean.
I sure hope the trends will improve, but I guess I'm not quite ready to rent the 'party-tent' (YET!)