2013 Halibut season wrap up



This is Fish Radio. I’m Stephanie Mangini. It’s the 2013 halibut season wrap up. More after this…halibut chart

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At noon today long liners are retiring their halibut gear for the remainder of 2013. Early numbers show that there was over a million pounds left of the nearly 22 million pound harvest. That could leave quite a hefty sum of fish bucks floating in the water.

Around Kodiak processors reported the season to be “scratchy”.  One Gulf fishermen agreed.

“As a whole it was kinda slow fishing.”

Rick Turvey is the captain and part owner of the Big Blue out of Kodiak.

“There is fish out there they are just harder to get and they don’t seem like they are getting big. A lot of small fish.”  

Kodiak docks gave an average price of $4.50 to a final price of $5.65 per pound. Kodiak lost the number one port title for halibut this year to Homer after a two year streak for the most pounds delivered, Homer coming in at over 4.4 million pounds as of yesterday. Fish Radio went farther by asking southeast processors how the season went for them.


“Down in southeast fishing was very good. We took some real serious hits over the last four or five years in terms of quota so we are down to a level where the fishery is coming back extremely strong. So fishing was very very good. Historically good.”

After many quota cuts to the southeast fleet processors feel like they are finally seeing a positive outcome in the stock. The dollar drop in price also got the halibut market flowing.

“For the most part things moved through better this year than last year.”   

Southeast processors say the cuts in quota over the years has helped to clean out freezers and they are hopeful to start fresh in the new year.

“ There was certainly demand for the product equal to the volume that we had. There is less fish getting caught in the state so I think that is effecting things a bit.”

Halibut catches for the 2014 season will be set when the International Pacific Halibut Commission gathers January 13th thru the 17th in Seattle.

“The big challenge is really going to be on what happens with quota, that will be the news as we get into winter and whether there is talk of  additional quota cuts in some of the areas. So that is what fishermen are watching for.”

For Halibut harvest and landing reports visit NOAA Fisheries Service 

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods, celebrating 101 years of partnership with Alaska’s coastal communities. www.oceanbeauty.com  In Kodiak, Stephanie Mangini.