Updates : roe herring, halibut, scallops, more
March 19, 2015
This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch –Halibut, roe herring, cod, crab, scallops and more. Fishing updates after this –
AFDF is spearheading the Alaska Mariculture Initiative, with the vision to grow a $1 billion industry in 30 years. Find out about mariculture stakeholder Workshops and much more at www.afdf.org
Federal grants are available to help “Made in America” companies compete with imports and save US jobs. Learn more at www.nwtaac.org.
By the time you hear this, Alaska’s first roe herring fishery at Sitka Sound could be underway or over. The fleet was on two hour notice yesterday. The 87-hundred ton quota is down by half from last year and the lowest Sitka catch since 2003. That, combined with historically low herring prices, has fewer boats fishing and they are doing so as a co-op. No herring fisheries at Seymour Canal, Hobart Bay, Kah Shakes or West Behm Canal.
Also in Southeast – the eastern central and northern areas have been closed to golden king crab due to low numbers of legal sized crab and recruits. The East central area is yielding fewer than four crabs per pot; and just three goldens for the northern region. Five other districts remain open till further notice. Some regions also are still open for geoduck divers.
Blustery weather kept most of Alaska’s halibut boats off the water for the March 14 start of that fishery. Only 30 landings were made so far, nearly all in Southeast, totaling about 182,000 pounds. No reliable word on prices until more poundage crosses the docks.
Jig and pot cod fisheries throughout Gulf are fully underway after high winds postponed the start in some regions. Trawlers also are targeting Gulf pollock.
After a three year closure, Prince William Sound’s pot shrimp fishery opens April 15 with a 67,000 pound catch.
In the Bering Sea, the snow crab fleet has landed 78% of the 61 million pound catch. Fishing continues for Tanners and golden king crab. fisheries also are underway for pollock, cod, and various flounders.
Anyone interested in weathervane scallops must register with Fish and Game by April 1. The scallop fishery has been open to all comers in state waters since 2013 at Yakutat, Kodiak and Dutch Harbor. Prince William Sound is closed to scallops this year.
The state Board of Fish is holding its final meeting of this cycle through Friday at the Anchorage Sheraton. And pay attention to this: the Alaska Legislature has given a positive response to the idea of a personal use priority over commercial and sport users. It’s the 7th time the measure, offered by Sen. Bill Stoltz, has come before Alaska lawmakers.
Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods – who salutes and says thanks to the men and women fishing across Alaska for their hard work and dedication. (www.oceanbeauty.com) In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.