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Friday, July 14, 2023

Alaska Bristol Bay sockeye return bigger and older this year KDLG by Jessie Sheldon - July 11, 2023 The fish in this season’s Bristol Bay sockeye run are older than usual - having spent more years in the open ocean - and significantly bigger, according to fisheries management researchers. KDLG’s Jessie Sheldon talked with Stacy Vega, area research biologist for commercial fisheries with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to learn more. https://www.kdlg.org/fisheries/2023-07-11/bristol-bay-sockeye-return-bigger-and-older-this-year SE Alaska Summer Troll Fishery for Chinook Closes Tonight As Target Harvest Expected to be Reached SeafoodNews.com by Peggy Parker - July 12, 2023 Yesterday the Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced the Chinook troll fishery would shut down at midnight tonight with the quota of 77,100 Chinook salmon expected to be landed by then. “All Chinook salmon must be offloaded prior to operating troll gear for other salmon species,” the ADF&G announcement read. “All processors and trollers are required to submit fish tickets to the department within seven days of landing.” The fishery was open by an eleventh-hour reversal in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals of a lower court decision that closed the fishery in agreement with a law suit aimed at shutting the commercial fishery down to protect Chinook that could eventually be eaten by members of the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales (SRKW) in the Salish Sea, 750 nautical miles away. At the center of the years-long legal battle between the Wild Fish Conservancy and NOAA Fisheries, is a flawed rule that the agency is currently addressing. The the state of Alaska, its U.S. Congressional delegation, and communities along the southeast Alaska coast challenged the court to allow the fishery to continue while NOAA Fisheries works on the biological opinion. That appeal was accepted June 21, just a week before the troll fishery was to begin. ADF&G manages the fishery in-season and put in place more restrictive regulations this year. “Trollers are reminded that the waters of frequent high king salmon abundance, described in 5 AAC 29.025 and the attached map (Figure 1), will be closed for the remainder of the season beginning at 11:59 p.m., July 12,” ADF&G said in the announcement. “Fishery participants are advised that coordinates for the high abundance areas have been added or modified by emergency order for 2023 to provide more accurate descriptions of these areas.” The announcement also listed certain Terminal Harvest Areas (THAs) that will remain open for Chinook salmon 28-inches and greater. THAs are areas just outside hatchery facilities that harvest salmon returning to the hatchery for cost recovery and broodstock needs. Those areas include: Herring Bay THA through August 30, Anita Bay THA through July 15, Port Saint Nicholas THA through July 31, Deep Inlet THA through September 20 with additional restriction listed in 5AAC33.376, Neets Bay THA, only in certain areas, until noon July 15, and Silver Bay THA through July 30, unless closed by emergency order before that. The others -- Port Armstrong, Crawfish Inlet, Thomas Bay, Mist Cove, and Hidden Falls THAs -- will close to retention of Chinook salmon tonight at midnight. https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1256923/SE-Alaska-Summer-Troll-Fishery-for-Chinook-Closes-Tonight-As-Target-Harvest-Expected-to-be-Reached Politics Alaska Senator Highlights Fisheries ‘Wins’ in 2024 Appropriations Bills Urner Barry by Ryan Doyle - July 14, 2023 U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) said she was able to score wins for the state in three FY24 Appropriations Bills, which were approved by the Appropriations Committee this week. Murkowski said the bills net ‘wins’ for the state’s public safety, fisheries and oceans research, and victim services. With the bills now heading to the Senate floor for full consideration, Murkowski said she could secure $63.93 million in investments for public safety, fisheries research, victim support services, entrepreneurship and small business owners, healthcare innovation, and Alaska’s historical and arts communities. “These additional appropriations bills continue the significant investments in Alaska that will make a difference in the safety of our communities, our oceans research capabilities, abilities to provide support to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault while also supporting Native-owned businesses and Alaskan taxpayers,” said Senator Lisa Murkowski. “The appropriations process is a powerful tool to allow Congress to fund our government, while also using the opportunity to direct investments back to our states. From supplying the Soldotna Police Department with new emergency care equipment, enhancing the research efforts of Alaska Fish and Game to study freshwater salmon habitat, supporting victim services organizations—these federal investments will help support communities across Alaska.” From the fisheries and oceans research standpoint, Murkowski said $205 million was secured for Fisheries Data Collections, Surveys, and Assessments, $44 million for Regional Fishery Management Councils and Fisheries Commissions, and $65 million for the Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery fund. Murkowski’s office also shared the following CDS requests that aim to improve the state’s integral fisheries: - Statewide: $4 million to the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation to conduct research on Bristol Bay red king crab enhancement, including optimum rearing conditions, habitat, growth, and survival through rearing stages and post release. - Statewide: $2.01 million for the Marine Exchange of Alaska to create a user guide to keep ships safely sailing in the Arctic. - Statewide: $1.2 million for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to fund coastal marine surveys that support sustainable salmon management in the northern Bering Sea, southern Bering Sea, and western Gulf of Alaska. - Statewide: $2.5 million to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to better equip Alaska Department of Fish and Game research vessels with necessary technology and upgrades. - Statewide: $520,000 for the Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association to train Fisheries Technicians to further develop their capabilities in salmon research, project implementation and administration. - North Slope Borough: $1.5 million to support the North Slope Borough Department of Wildlife Management in estimating the abundance of the Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort stock of bowhead whales. - Statewide: $2.8 million for the University of Alaska System to research the impacts of environmental stressors on freshwater and marine aquatic life in Alaska. - Anchorage: $106,000 for the University of Alaska System to research alternative methods of energy consumption reduction in kelp and seaweed drying processes. - Annette Islands Reserve: $403,000 for the Metlakatla Indian Community for fish hatchery improvements. - Statewide: $4 million for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to research freshwater and marine juvenile salmon habitat. - Annette Islands Reserve: $1 million for the Metlakatla Indian Community to monitor, survey, and trap European green crab in Southeast Alaska. - North Slope Borough: $1.5 million for the North Slope Borough Department of Wildlife Management To support the North Slope Borough Department of Wildlife Management in estimating the abundance of the Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort stock of bowhead whales. https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1257128/Alaska-Senator-Highlights-Fisheries-Wins-in-2024-Appropriations-Bills Federal Register Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modification of the West Coast Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #1-#10 A Rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 07/13/2023 NMFS announces ten inseason actions for the 2023–2024 ocean salmon fishing season. These inseason actions modify the commercial salmon troll fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/07/13/2023-14721/fisheries-off-west-coast-states-modification-of-the-west-coast-salmon-fisheries-inseason-actions Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Blackspotted and Rougheye Rockfish in the Central Aleutian and Western Aleutian Districts of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area A Rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 07/13/2023 NMFS is prohibiting retention of blackspotted and rougheye rockfish in the Central Aleutian and Western Aleutian districts (CAI/WAI) of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary because the 2023 blackspotted and rougheye rockfish initial total allowable catch (ITAC) in the CAI/WAI of the BSAI has been reached. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/07/13/2023-14820/fisheries-of-the-exclusive-economic-zone-off-alaska-blackspotted-and-rougheye-rockfish-in-the Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone off Alaska; Request for Information on Research Priorities for the North Pacific Fishery Management Council A Notice by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 07/14/2023 The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) is requesting information from the public on research priorities for the fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone off Alaska for its triennial review. The Council develops research priorities for fisheries, habitats, and other areas necessary for management purposes and reviews those priorities every 3 years. This notice invites the public to submit written comments on the topic generally and in response to specific questions outlined below. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/07/14/2023-14924/fisheries-of-the-exclusive-economic-zone-off-alaska-request-for-information-on-research-priorities Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Ocean Perch in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska A Rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 07/14/2023 NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific ocean perch in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2023 total allowable catch of Pacific ocean perch in the West Yakutat District of the GOA. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/07/14/2023-14952/fisheries-of-the-exclusive-economic-zone-off-alaska-pacific-ocean-perch-in-the-west-yakutat-district Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Dusky Rockfish in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska A Rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 07/14/2023 NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for dusky rockfish in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the 2023 total allowable catch of dusky rockfish in the West Yakutat District of the GOA. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/07/14/2023-14972/fisheries-of-the-exclusive-economic-zone-off-alaska-dusky-rockfish-in-the-west-yakutat-district-of FYI’s Alaska Marine Lines Launches New Rail Service Dock in Seattle Fishermen's News - July 12, 2023 Alaska Marine Lines (AML) has introduced a new rail dock in Seattle to accommodate an increasing demand for Alaska pollock in destinations throughout the Lower 48 states. https://fishermensnews.com/alaska-marine-lines-launches-new-rail-service-dock-in-seattle/ Pacific Seafood Processors Association 1900 W Emerson Place Suite 205, Seattle, WA 98119 Phone: 206.281.1667 E-mail: admin@pspafish.net; Website: www.pspafish.net Our office days/hours are Monday-Friday 8:00 A.M. - 5:00 P.M. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work in this message is distributed under fair use without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit research and educational purposes only. *Inclusion of a news article, report, or other document in this email does not imply PSPA support or endorsement of the information or opinion expressed in the document.

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