pf home
Summary for February 23, 2009 - February 27, 2009:

Monday, February 23, 2009

Exxon Valdez payments to Bristol Bay gillnetters?

Lawyers overseeing money collected from the Exxon Valdez oil spill are asking a federal judge to approve more payments to a range of commercial fishermen including Bristol Bay salmon gillnetters.

This is darned complicated, but it appears this payout involves money from something called the Alyeska Qualified Settlement Fund, as well as some punitive damages. – Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing as The Highliner for the Anchorage Daily News

Read more:


Editorial: Is Columbia gillnet plan a solution?

The long dispute between gillnetters and sport fishermen over Columbia River salmon and steelhead has led to nothing but bitterness and ever-more pressure on threatened fish. The issue of how to divide the catch on the Columbia has even paralyzed fishing regulations on the river by pitting the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission against its counterpart in Washington. – The Oregonian

Read more:


Cook Inlet panel late with its report

A report on disputes over Cook Inlet salmon is a month late and members of a legislative task force blame a busy political season and lack of information.  – Anchorage Daily News

Read more:


California Chinook fading away

SAN FRANCISCO — Prized king salmon — that buttery, heart-healthy fish — are vanishing from the rivers of northern California.

The smallest number of Pacific Ocean salmon ever recorded swam back to the Sacramento River via San Francisco Bay last fall, the latest evidence of the decline of the storied fish along the West Coast. – Record-Searchlight, Redding, Calif.

Read more:


Letter: Cook Inlet beluga listing not science

Governor Sarah Palin and the Alaska Legislature were criticized for opposing the Endangered Species Act listings of beluga whales in Cook Inlet and polar bears. In these articles, ESA advocates imply the listings are based on definitive science. They are not. Gov. Palin and her chief of staff, Mike Nizich, have capably justified the state’s positions. -- Matthew A. Cronin, aresearch associate professor of animal genetics with University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Palmer Research Center, writing to the Fairbanks News-Miner

Read more:


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Sitka herring topic in Board of Fisheries meeting

The state Board of Fisheries is meeting this week in Sitka. As usual in those parts,
herring is the hot topic. 

Proposal 209 is of particular interest to The Highliner. It would convert the Sitka Sound sac roe herring harvest from derby fishing to equal shares for each of the 50 state permit holders.
Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing as The Highliner for the Anchorage Daily News

Read more:


Columbia River spring seasons set

The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission has approved the Columbia River spring Chinook salmon fishing seasons set by the Columbia River Compact earlier this month. – Pacific Fishing columnist Cassandra Marie Profita, writing in The Daily Astorian

Read more:


Is there money in tracking your product?

Seafood aficionados who prefer local product could soon have access to a bar-coding system that traces the history of their fish purchase from ocean to market, and introduces buyers to the fishermen and processors who caught and prepared it.

A pilot marketing project called PacificFishTrax -- a joint venture involving Oregon State University (OSU), the Community Seafood Initiative (CSI), and long-time Oregon fishermen -- is a combination scientific research and public outreach effort designed to simultaneously get the word out about Oregon's commercial fisheries, and strengthen wild fish runs, including salmon. – Newport News-Times

Read more:


Company eyes tidal power off Juneau

A New York state-based company says Gastineau Channel might be a good place to test out -- and show off -- the power of tidal energy.

"I think it's a great idea to have something that people can see," said Chris Rose of the Renewable Energy Alaska Project.  – Juneau Empire

Read more:


What do you think?

We need your feedback.
Pacific Fishing has been trying out some new technology that will let us display the magazine on line. (No, we’re not giving up the hard copy magazine, just trying to make it easer for everyone to read.)
Below is one digital version. Click on the link. Take a look. Let me know what you think at

Don McManman


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

ADF&G no longer the lead in sustainable certification

Alaska salmon has gained recognition around the world as a healthy and sustainable resource. But this perception is in jeopardy.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is discontinuing its role as client for salmon certification with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). – Kodiak Daily Mirror

Read more:


Fined for selling poached sockeye

A Port McNeill, B.C., man was fined $5,000 in Port Hardy Provincial Court after pleading guilty to selling fish caught by a harvester without a license authorizing sales.

James Robert Wadhams was charged after fishery officers observed him and another man selling sockeye salmon to the public, in the community of Woss, B.C. – Press release

Read more:


Coast Guard terminates Alaska fishing trip

The Coast Guard terminated the voyage of the 40-foot commercial fishing vessel Resolution for a safety violation during a boarding Tuesday in Marmot Bay near Kodiak city.

A Coast Guard boarding team from the cutter Mustang found the vessel master operating with a 4-month-old child on board and no immersion suit available for the infant. – Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing as The Highliner for the Anchorage Daily News

Read more:


Fishery for gooseneck barnacles?

The percebes fishery on Vancouver Island is an experimental community-based fishery operating under sustainability guidelines. It is managed by the Westcoast Aquatic Management Board, which is the first Board of its kind in Canada mandated to use an integrated, ecosystem-based approach.

Percebes are a shellfish with a long, soft body like the neck of a goose, hard shells at the top, and a 'foot' at the bottom that attaches them to rocks. They only grow on rocks exposed to heavy surf, and only grow in several parts of the world. They are highly sought after as a rare delicacy, savoured for their lovely texture and flavour which is somewhat like crab or lobster. – West Coast Vancouver Island Aquatic Board

Read more:

Eureka to buy ice plant

The city council unanimously approved the use of the city's redevelopment funds to purchase the ice flake plant and establish it in time for this year's shrimp season, but decided to postpone the budget discussion to the next meeting. – Eureka Times-Standard

Read more:


Thursday, February 26, 2009

Another poor for West Coast trollers year

The forecast for 73 salmon stocks is out, and it looks likely 2009 will see a repeat of 2008's coastal salmon fishery shut down.

The problem: continued poor returns of fall Chinook to California's Sacramento River.

An estimated 122,196 fall Chinook will return to the Sacramento this year, about twice what was forecast for 2008 but still the third lowest return since 1992, according to the Pacific Fishery Management Council. – The Oregonian

Read more:


Coast Guard rescues four fishermen on Akutan

Even with night-vision goggles, Lt. Cmdr. Scott Jackson could hardly see a thing as his Jayhawk helicopter hurtled through the darkness, on the way to rescue four stranded fishermen.

The U.S. Coast Guardsman had been dispatched on the sortie at about 5 a.m. Wednesday to hunt for the commercial fishing crew that ran their vessel aground in the Aleutians after the vessel's engine room began taking on water.

The crewmen from the 58-foot Kodiak-based Icy Mist were stuck on Akutan, 766 miles southwest of Anchorage and about 40 miles east of Dutch Harbor – Anchorage Daily News

Read more:


Obama nominates ex-Washington governor for Commerce

WASHINGTON -- When President Barack Obama introduced Gary Locke on Wednesday as his nominee for commerce secretary, the former Washington governor spoke in the vague generalities of a potential Cabinet officer.  

"I'm committed to making the department an active and integral partner in advancing your economic policies and restoring the American dream to all Americans," Locke told Obama, who was standing at his shoulder.

But for lawmakers, business men and women, and elected leaders from the Northwest, Locke represents something more definite -- a direct link to the White House and someone who might help the region address thorny issues, including international trade, salmon protection and basic economic assistance. – The Oregonian

Read more:


Smelt run biggest in thee years

The reports from smelt dippers on the Cowlitz River on Saturday were the best in three seasons. Mid-week reports of commercial activity brought out plenty of dippers.

The majority of the fish caught were males, some of which measured 9 inches long, said Joe Hymer, a state fish biologist. – Tacoma News Tribune

Read more:


Villages worry about Pebble mine’s effect on subsistence

Though some of the players involved were different, much of the information regarding the feasibility and impacts of the Pebble Mine project on Bristol Bay fisheries and the Native Alaska subsistence lifestyle presented at last week's community meeting at Islands and Ocean Visitor Center echoed similar concerns raised more than a year ago.

Nunamta Aulukestai, (Caretakers of Our Lands), is a consortium of eight village corporations that have combined to sponsor statewide community meetings to raise awareness of mining impacts on state resources. – Homer Tribune

Read more:


Friday, February 27, 2009

New skate fishery coming to Cordova

A new skate fishery to begin in March is a test supported by local canneries, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Cordova District Fishermen United and the Alaska Board of Fisheries. – Cordova Times

Read more:


Feds to help suffering natives in village

The Bureau of Indian Affairs will provide financial assistance to help residents in the struggling village of Emmonak, a BIA official said.   

The agency has agreed to waive rules so more people in the village can be eligible for a one-time grant that could be worth up to $1,000, said Niles Cesar, BIA’s regional director for Alaska.
– Dutch Harbor Fisherman

Read more:


Salvage plan coming for Akutan casualty

The Coast Guard is working with Magone Marine and the Alaska Department of Conservation on a salvage plan for the F/V Icy Mist , which grounded on Akutan Island Wednesday morning.

According to the crew of the vessel, approximately 2,700 gallons of diesel, 150 gallons of lube oil and 200 gallons of hydraulic oil are on board. – KUDB, Dutch Harbor

Read more:


Pollock fishery may be hampered by Chinook bycatch

A draft environmental impact statement on Bering Sea Chinook salmon bycatch management published by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in December raises the possibility of limitations on the Bering Sea pollock fishery if prescribed Chinook bycatch levels are exceeded. – Kodiak Daily Mirror

Read more:


Sitka herring fishery to continue as derby

The Board of Fisheries has rejected Proposal 209, which would have divided the Sitka sac roe herring harvest equally among the 50 seiners holding permits for the fishery.
Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing as The Highliner for the Anchorage Daily News

Read more: