Salmon mural in Dillingham by Arpayo Moore


The last weekly salmon update from ASMI marks the end of the 2021 season and the statewide catches were up by 15% compared to the preseason forecasts.

The biggest money making fish exceeded expectations the most. The haul of sockeye salmon topped 54 compared to the pre-season forecast of 46.5 million.

Similarly, the pink salmon catch of over 150 million swamped the prediction of just over 124 million humpies.

And although the run of chum salmon was disappointing, falling about four million short of the 15.3 million projection, nearly five million chums were caught since August 1, making it one of the three largest chum harvests in the last decade.

The coho catch of 2.2 million is 1.6 million shy of the forecast.

For Chinook salmon, the catch of 244,000 is 25,000 below expectations.

Overall, Alaska’s salmon catch so far of 219 million fish is 29 million more than projected thanks to the surge of pinks.

But despite the bigger numbers, smaller fish sizes will lead to less impressive harvest totals and revenues to fishermen. Yet, with higher dock prices across the board, it will produce a good payday.

The Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game will release the catch totals, fish prices and overall revenues by region in early October.

The weekly salmon updates are compiled by McKinley Research for the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute.