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#11-15-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

SE cuke quota nearly caught
by Matt Lichtenstein
November 15, 2013 8:27 am
Sea cucumber fishing is winding down for commercial divers in Southeast Alaska. There is another opening Monday but the fleet is very close to reaching its overall quota and boats have begun calling it quits. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is reporting a catch of just over one-million, four-hundred and sixty-four thousand pounds to date. “We have about a million and a half pounds harvested. That....

Winter trolling starts strong
by Matt Lichtenstein
November 14, 2013 1:38 pm
It’s about a month into the Southeast Alaska Winter king salmon season and so far, commercial trollers have had some of the best fishing they’ve seen in the last 20 years, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Assistant Troll Management Biologist Grant Hagerman said on Tuesday that the fleet had landed nearly 12 thousand Chinook, “Which…. compared to a 5-year, 10-year average are well, well above that…. more than twice, almost 3 times that 5 and 10-year average….. pretty Impressive…..So, through the end of October....

AJOC EDITORIAL: Legal, historic harvest is not bycatch
Published: 2013.11.14 12:12 PM
“Words have meaning, and names have power.”
The word of the day is bycatch, and those who would use it against Cook Inlet setnetters well understand the power of words. The quote is attributable to Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, the 17th century Spanish author who wrote the classic novel “Don Quixote” about the man from La Mancha who travels the land engaging in misguided quests that always end badly yet never shake a groundless faith he has acted heroically. Much like the reality Don Quixote stubbornly ignored while repeatedly falling victim to it, words retain their definition regardless of any attempts to pretend they mean the....

Carrot, not stick
Wednesday, 13 November 2013
I was having a conversation with someone the other day about China's one-child policy. He was saying, essentially, that the ramifications for not following the policy are so steep that only the richest Chinese families can afford to have more than one child, and the rest of the people live in fear of being jailed, fined beyond their means or the unintentionally worse. The problem is that China uses the stick instead of the carrot to sway its citizens to comply. Instead of creating an incentive for the people to follow the policy, it simply punishes them for not following it. We manage fisheries (and many industries) the same way. Perhaps at one time it seemed justified to flail fleets...

Kings drive news, but sockeye users drive Inlet economy
Published: 2013.11.14 12:18 PM
Editor’s note: This is the third in the Morris Communications series “The case for conserving the Kenai king salmon.” There are very few things that can immediately quantify the declining value of sport fishing for Kenai River king salmon as quickly as the shelves at Trustworthy Hardware in Soldotna. Shelves that once held Kwikfish K16 lures in 75 color combinations — tailor-made for fishing on the deep-swimming king salmon— are now crowded with sockeye and silver salmon gear. Newly crafted...

Mat-Su Borough approves salmon protections for culverts

Published: 2013.11.14 12:05 PM
As fishing organizations throughout Southcentral gear up for the contentious Cook Inlet fisheries meetings this winter, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough has taken its own action toward improving fish runs. In August, the Mat-Su Borough Assembly passed an ordinance requiring fish-friendly culverts for new roads that cross anadromous water bodies. That came after about a decade of work to improve fish passage throughout the borough by several partners. During 2013, the borough replaced three culverts, reopening more than 13 miles of upstream habitat, according to Bill Rice, who works on culvert issues through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. In the next two years....

Alaska Salmon Alliance proposes better way to solve our fish fights
Posted: November 14, 2013 - 9:09am
Battles over fish are nothing new to Alaskans. It is part of the state’s story that different user groups fight over who gets what and when. There’s one constant in those fish battles, however: Everybody wants to protect the fish.  Fish are integral to all Alaskans — they may figure prominently in your household’s livelihood or lifestyle. Even if you’ve never caught a fish, the health of Alaska’s fish runs is interwoven into....

Repairs under way at Whittier AMHS dock
Posted 11/15/2013
by - Cordova Times Staff
AKDOT Commissioner Reuben Yost issued a brief notice earlier this week, updating the community on efforts to restore ferry service at the dock in Whittier. "The Department of Transportation & Public Facilities is actively working toward....

Research vessel won't get to Alaska until 2015
Posted: Friday, November 15, 2013 12:00 am
Staff Report
A new polar ocean research vessel to be operated by the University of Alaska Fairbanks will remain on the Great Lakes this winter because of construction delays, the National Science Foundation announced in a news release Thursday....

The Alaska Fisheries Report
Nov 14, 2013
Coming up this week, commercial fishermen respond to the Soldotna sportsfishing guide industry’s attempt to bring to an end to one of Alaska’s oldest fisheries; it looks like crabbers got their pots in the water with....

Stimson Back in Service After Maintenance in Unalaska
By Annie Ropeik
Thursday, November 14 2013
The Alaska State Troopers’ largest patrol vessel is back in service after an engine upgrade in its home port of Dutch Harbor. The patrol vessel Stimson was out of commission for 10 days earlier this month during the overhaul. Skipper Troy Magnusen says the patrol vessel’s engines were well....

November 14, 2013
Kirk: NOAA pullout threat 'folly'
By Sean Horgan
Staff Writer
Mayor Carolyn Kirk Thursday labeled a Senate Appropriations Committee threat to close down NOAA’s Northeast Regional Office in Gloucester and ship its 200 jobs elsewhere as “folly,” saying it represents little more than a land grab by Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski. “I think it dies in the House,” Kirk said Thursday, referring to the appropriations budget provision that calls for the shuttering of the NOAA regional headquarters here as a response to Mikulski’s ongoing frustrations with NOAA. “I think they’re painting themselves into a...

November 14, 2013
Fishing advocates eye health-care forum
By Sean Horgan
Staff Writer
The trials and tribulations of the federal Affordable Care Act have left potential health insurance consumers swimming in conflicting information, and the Gloucester-based Fishing Partnership is trying to help folks cut through the confusion. The fishing industry advocacy group, in partnership with the Massachusetts Fishermen’s Partnership, is organizing a health-care forum next Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library that could help fishing families and...

A total 26 salmon farms affected by sea lice
Friday, November 15, 2013, 22:40 (GMT + 9)
The National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service (Sernapesca) confirmed the existence of 26 centres farming Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) with a high spread of caligus (sea lice), one less compared to the previous week. These data were provided by...