Despite COVID, Low Returns in Chignik and Copper River, Alaska Nets More than 107 Million Salmon SeafoodNews.com by Peggy Parker - September 1, 2020 As the salmon season in Alaska winds down, the year-to-date totals that have been ratcheting up in recent weeks are now nearly identical to 2018, notes Garrett Evridge of the McDowell Group. The difference is in the species mix: this year has 16 million more pinks, about 12 million fewer keta (chum), and five million fewer sockeye. Last week’s harvest of nearly three million salmon (mostly pink) brings the year’s total to 107.2 million fish. With small landings still being posted in Southeast, Kodiak, and Southcentral, all but about three percent of the annual harvest has (historically) been landed. About 180,000 sockeye were harvested last week with nearly all landings taking place in Kodiak and the AK Peninsula & Aleutian Islands region. Total sockeye landed in 2020 now number 45.14 million fish. The YTD pink harvest totals 55 million fish, a pace 44% and 47% ahead of 2018 and 2016, respectively. While Prince William Sound has contributed the most pink salmon of any region in the state at 21.1 million, the area lags its projected harvest by about a third. Pink salmon harvest in Kodiak has been particularly strong with landings now more than eight million ahead of its projected harvest of roughly 12 million salmon. Total production in Kodiak is at 20.7 million pink salmon. Southeast has produced about 11% of the YTD pink harvest with landings of 6.2 million salmon at record low levels. Keta, or chum salmon is by far the biggest surprise in the state with YTD statewide landings of 5.53 million salmon, 69% lower than 2019 and the 5-year average. Statewide coho landings of 1.4 million fish are 55% lower than the 5-year average with most areas seeing weakness. Although Bristol Bay is ahead of last year, landings for coho of 94,000 salmon are about 20% lower than the 5-year average. Unlike other areas, fishing in Kodiak has been relatively strong with YTD harvest 16% ahead of the 5-year average. Chinook production lags 2019 by about 70,000 fish or 27%. Improved harvest in Southeast has narrowed the deficit against 2019 to 3%. Next week’s harvest update will be sent on Tuesday due to the Labor Day holiday. The weekly salmon update is produced by McDowell Group on behalf of the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute. https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1179639/Despite-COVID-Low-Returns-in-Chignik-and-Copper-River-Alaska-Nets-More-than-107-Million-Salmon Observer plans modified for commercial crab season Cordova Times - September 1, 2020 Observer deployment plans for the upcoming commercial crab season have been modified by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in order to reduce risks of exposure to the COVID-19 virus, while still meeting minimum stock assessment data needs. https://www.thecordovatimes.com/2020/09/01/observer-plans-modified-for-commercial-crab-season/ Federal Register Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area A Rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 09/01/2020 NMFS is opening directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels less than 60 feet (18.3 meters) length overall (LOA) using hook-and-line or pot gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI). This action is necessary to fully use the 2020 total allowable catch of Pacific cod allocated to catcher vessels less than 60 feet LOA using hook-and-line or pot gear in the BSAI. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/09/01/2020-19259/fisheries-of-the-exclusive-economic-zone-off-alaska-pacific-cod-in-the-bering-sea-and-aleutian North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting A Notice by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 09/01/2020 The North Pacific Fishery Management Council's (NPFMC) Trawl Electronic Monitoring (EM) Committee will meet via webconference. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/09/01/2020-19281/north-pacific-fishery-management-council-public-meeting North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting A Notice by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 09/01/2020 The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Partial Coverage Fishery Monitoring Advisory Committee (PCFMAC) will meet via webconference on September 16, 2020. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/09/01/2020-19280/north-pacific-fishery-management-council-public-meeting FYI’s PACIFIC MARINE EXPO ANNOUNCES CANCELLATION OF 2020 EVENT AND LAUNCH OF NEW DIGITAL EXPERIENCE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH NATIONAL FISHERMAN “Expo Online” Presented by National Fisherman will take place November 17-19, 2020 SEATTLE,WA—Aug 31, 2020 --Diversified Communications, organizer of Pacific Marine Expo today announced that due to ongoing health and safety issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become necessary to cancel the 2020 edition that was planned for December of 2020. http://www.pacificfishing.com/Pacific-Marine-Expo-cancellation.pdf Opinion Opinion: The conservative case against developing Alaska's Pebble Mine President Trump should instruct his agencies to declare the Pebble project unworkable. The Hill by Andy Sabin, Opinion Contributor - August 27, 2020 The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers this week warned that the proposed Pebble project — a vast gold and copper mine near the headwaters of Alaska's Bristol Bay — was impossible to build without causing significant damage to the region's pristine waters and salmon fishery. https://thehill.com/changing-america/opinion/513792-the-conservative-case-against-developing-alaskas-pebble-mine Opinion: Pebble and fish, not one or the other Anchorage Daily News by John Shively - August 29, 2020 In 2008, I was asked to lead the newly formed Pebble Partnership. I made it clear to the project’s two partners, Anglo American and Northern Dynasty, that if they were looking for a mine cheerleader, they were talking to the wrong guy. Like most Alaskans, I had questions about Pebble, but I also believed strongly in the permitting process. A controversial project like Pebble is exactly why we have a regulatory process for fully evaluating projects. https://www.adn.com/opinions/2020/08/30/pebble-and-fish-not-one-or-the-other/
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