Fish Radio
Southeast tops AK salmon catch; Halibut wrapping up
October 29, 2014                 

Economic value of seafood industry

 This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – Southeast tops Alaska’s salmon catches and halibut is wrapping up. More after this —

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Fishermen in Southeast Alaska hauled in the most salmon of any other region again this summer –narrowly edging Prince William Sound by just 404 thousand fish. The numbers are preliminary, but state figures show that the Panhandle produced a catch of just over 49 million salmon and just under that at the Sound. Notably, nearly 44 million of the Prince William Sound salmon were pinks.

Bristol Bay ranked third in terms of salmon totals at nearly 31 million fish – all but two million of the fish were sockeyes – the reigning salmon catch in the state!

Kodiak ranked fourth for total salmon catches this summer at 14.4 million. Pinks made up the bulk of the pack with sockeyes coming in at 3.4 million.

That’s followed by the Alaska Peninsula with a harvest of 5 million salmon, mostly reds.

Cook Inlet landings were 6th at about 3.7 million salmon, nearly all sockeyes.

More than 2 million salmon came out of the AYK region this summer.

In all, Alaska’s preliminary total statewide salmon catch stands at 156 million fish, 20 million more than expected. That’s thanks to bumper harvest of nearly 44 million sockeyes.

There’s little more than one week left in the halibut season and Alaska longliners have taken 97 percent of the nearly 16 million pound catch limit. There’s less than half a million pounds to go by the time the fishery ends on November 7th.   Halibut dock prices are still in the six to seven dollar range at major ports and could go higher.

Meanwhile, there’s almost no talk of how the halibut catches might play out for next year. Halibut managers will meet Dec. 2-3 in Seattle to talk about the 2015 fishery and reveal their catch recommendations. Final decisions will be made by the International Pacific Halibut Commission in late January in Vancouver. The halibut fishery will reopen in March.

Find links to fish catches and fish meetings at our website

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods. Ocean Beauty has contributed over 10 million meals to the U.S. Food Bank network, and is committed to ending hunger in America.     In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.