Monday, March 28, 2011


The state's fastest fishing moneymaker is on two-hour opening notice as the Alaska Department of Fish & Game has announced that the Sitka Sound sac roe herring fishery is approaching harvest quality.

– Juneau Empire

Hake motherships form co-op

In a move likely to substantially increase the economic efficiency of the West Coast's offshore mothership whiting fishery, all 36 catcher vessels in that fleet have formed a cooperative to pool their federally allocated shares of whiting.


How to appeal NOAA enforcement

On March 16, 2011 Commerce Secretary Gary Locke issued a Secretarial Decision Memorandum that outlines the process by which those who were issued a Notice of Violation and Assessment (NOVA) on or after March 17, 1994 and who feel their case was improperly adjudicated can apply to Special Master Charles Swartwood for review.

– Saving Seafoods Alerts

Gillnetters fight for survival

Oregon commercial salmon fishermen went to bat for the rights to gillnet on the main stem of the Columbia River.

– Daily Astorian

Court rules for Sacramento smelt

A federal appeals court has upheld the constitutionality of Endangered Species Act protections for the Delta smelt, rejecting claims by a conservative legal organization.

– Los Angeles Times

FEMA to help Oregon harbors

Two weeks after an earthquake in Japan sent a tsunami ripping along the southern Oregon Coast, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced Friday it will fund repairs and replace damaged infrastructure in Curry County.

– The Oregonian

Crescent City wonders: Where's FEMA?

It's been wo weeks since a tsunami swept through Crescent City Harbor, ravaging docks and sinking boats — and it is still unknown whether any federal money will be sent for repairs.

– Crescent City Triplicate

Radiation worries slight

Ocean currents and natural dilution of seawater contaminated by the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant are likely to spare marine life and the underwater ecosystem from devastation, scientists say.

– Japan Times

Ocean 'spacial planning' worries senator

Alaska Senator Mark Begich is quick to name the issue that's giving him the biggest earful so far in his new post as chairman of the Commerce Subcommittee on Oceans, Fisheries, and Coast Guard: "marine spatial planning." 

– Pacific Fishing columnist Laine Welch, writing in SitNews, Ketchikan

Navy's Alaska exercises concern fishermen

This summer the military plans to resume its Northern Edge exercises that include bombing ranges in the Gulf of Alaska.

– KMXT, Kodiak

Moving ahead with Oregon reserves

Oregon's Coastal Caucus announced on March 17 that they had filed legislation to launch the process for the state's "marine reserves experiment."

– Newport News Times


Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Here we go again. The sports fishing industry has launched another attempt to cut off gillnet fishing. This particular bill would end gillnet fishing on the main stem of the Columbia River.

– Daily Astorian



Natives want all-Yukon Chinook ban

Yukon First Nations want to shut down Chinook fishing on the Yukon River.

– Yukon News

Alaska cuts sports shrimp pot number

The growing popularity of tasty Prince William Sound shrimp has prompted Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologists to cut the number of pots recreational shrimpers can soak this year.

– Anchorage Daily News

Fishing profile: Linda Behnken

Linda Behnken has been fishing for halibut, sablefish and salmon in Alaskan waters since 1982.

– SitNews, Ketchikan

Feds' seafood promotion money diverted

Revelations that $400 million that should have been used to promote seafood caught or farmed in the United States was instead used as part to pay for the running of the NOAA and its National Marine Fisheries Service has sparked anger in the commercial fishing industry from Florida to New England.

– Goucester (Mass.) Daily Times

Sporties object to Columbia net opener

Four hours of commercial fishing for spring Chinook in the Columbia River is scheduled for Tuesday night despite the objections of sportsmen.

– Vancouver (Wash.) Columbian

Crescent City fishermen want reconstruction jobs

Some local fishermen and a diving company want more of this area's labor pool to be used in tsunami recovery efforts at Crescent City Harbor.

– Crescent City Triplicate

B.C. halibut price high, then softens

Retailers are reporting chunks of the flatfish are selling extremely well as prices soften and fishermen make the most of favorable weather to bring in huge hauls.

– Victoria Times Colonist

Aleut Corp. joins sea lion fight

The Aleut Corp. and its subsidiary, Aleut Enterprise LLC, are seeking to intervene in the Steller sea lion lawsuit.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing in his blog: Deckboss

Appointments to Fish Board

Gov. Sean Parnell appointed Susan Jeffrey and reappointed Bill Brown and John Jensen to the Board of Fisheries.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing in his blog: Deckboss


Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Between 1981 and 1995, a study was conducted to track movement and growth of sablefish, an important commercial species. Over the last six months, commercial fishermen have recovered three of the tagged fish.


B.C. halibut finding market

Retailers are reporting chunks of the flatfish are selling extremely well as prices soften and fishermen make the most of favorable weather to bring in huge hauls.

– Victoria Times Colonist

Some NW trollers need money to fish

Without disaster funds from last year's bad season, many commercial salmon trollers don't have the funds to leave port.

– Coos Bay World

Trollers want early salmon opener

Local commercial and sport fishermen voiced their hope for the earliest possible start of this salmon season.

– Eureka Times Standard

Alaska cod fishery season short

The state-waters Pacific cod fishery will have an exceptionally short season this year. The Aleutian Islands district will opens today, only to close a day and a half later on Thursday.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Alexandra Gutierrez, reporting for KUCB, Unalaska

Sea ice lowest in decades

The surface area of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean shrank this winter to one of its lowest levels in decades.

– Anchorage Daily News

New Pacific Fishing blog

We'd like you to meet someone who chronicles the challenges faced by the folks you leave behind each season: Robin Blue, a fisherman's wife. She writes Fishing Blues, and we're featuring the blog on Pacific Fishing's website. Look to your right. Enjoy!

Tsunami may hurt herring market

As the Sitka Sound herring sac roe fishery gets underway, economists predict that it may be the first of many seafood markets to be affected by the recent earthquake and tsunami that happened in northern Japan.

– KCAW, Sitka

Warrenton electronics expo on now

Representatives for more than 20 major marine electronics brands will be on hand to offer hands-on demonstrations of their latest products at the Jensen Communications Inc 10th annual Fish Expo at its location at 155 SE First St. in Warrenton today and tomorrow (Thursday). Hours of the show are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. for both days. All commercial fishermen and sportsmen are cordially invited to attend.

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Radioactivity in Dutch

During the worst week of the Japanese nuclear crisis, the EPA's radiation monitor in Dutch Harbor recorded the highest levels of radioactive iodine fallout in the United States among reporting stations. "It may be high relative to the other readings, but it is inconsequential," said Bernd Jilly, director of the state's health lab in Anchorage.

– Anchorage Daily News

Fish waste firm seeks Alaska money

The company wants to start a plant at Sitka to process fish waste into goods such as aquaculture and pet feed and human nutritional products.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing in his blog: Deckboss


Thursday, March 31, 2011


The Bering Sea snow crab fishery is just about over and, by all accounts, it's been a good one. Heather Fitch, area manager at the Fish and Game office at Dutch Harbor, said a couple hundred thousand pounds remain out of the nearly 50 million pound catch quota, and three boats remain on the grounds out of a fleet of 67 vessels. Fitch says hauls have been hefty.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Laine Welch reporting for Fish Radio

Canadian snow crab price high

The price of snow crab is at its highest level in years – and that means almost $100 million more this year than last for the province's crab fishermen.

– Victoria Times Colonist


Radiation all around us

"Radiation is all around us in our daily lives, and these findings are a minuscule amount compared to what people experience every day," said Patricia Hansen, an FDA senior scientist.

– EPA and FDA

Columbia R. derelict removal

The Unified Command for operations to remove the barge Davy Crockett from the Columbia River will begin construction of a cofferdam around the vessel Friday.

– Coast Guard

Fighting 'rock vomit'

Rock vomit, technically Didemnum vexilim, is an invasive tunicate, or sea squirt, first discovered in Alaska waters during the Sitka Marine Invasive Species Bioblitz in June 2010. It was the first confirmed occurrence of this invasive species in Alaska.

– Capital City Weekly

Klamath dam removal: 'Felony-stupid'

It is wrong to remove dams, which are producing green power, such as in the Klamath Basin of Siskiyou County.

– Siskiyou Daily

Wind power in Hecate Strait

The fierce, consistent winds blowing through the Hecate Strait on the northwest coast of British Columbia would seem to make the site an easy choice for Canada's first offshore wind project. But reality has turned out to be a lot more complex.


Some Japanese seafood exports canceled

Exports of Japanese seafood have been canceled by foreign buyers on concern that the products may have been contaminated by radiation leaking from the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant, a government official said.

– Japan Times

Alaska Glacier Seafoods expands in Juneau

Alaska Glacier Seafoods has just become part of a large and rather unique land transaction. In doing so, it's also moved Juneau closer to becoming a key logistics center for Southeast Alaska fisheries.

– Juneau Empire

Columbia springer catch disappointing

Official results were pending late Wednesday, but Oregon officials said the total catch looks like about 1,200 hatchery spring Chinook. That's just half of what was expected and a low enough figure to cause some concern about the coming run of upriver Columbia and Snake River salmon.

– The Oregonian

Vigil for Japanese victims tonight

The Port of Seattle will hold a candlelight service tonight to remember victims of the earthquake and tsunami disaster in Japan. Members from the local fishing, Japanese, and port community will speak during the service. The vigil will begin at 7:30 p.m. at Fishermen's Terminal by the covered plaza area near Chinook's Restaurant and Fishermen's Memorial. Candles will be distributed at the service.


Friday, April 1, 2011


Southeast Alaska commercial trollers will have a Chinook salmon harvest allocation this year of 218,060 fish, an increase of 54,178 over last year.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing in his blog: Deckboss



Fish wheels in Yukon future

As Chinook salmon numbers have gone down, suicide rates have gone up, says Douglas Karlberg. The veteran fisherman runs a small fishery and processing plant in Kaltag, Alaska, a remote Athabaskan village 725 kilometres upriver.

– Yukon News


N. Pacific council eyes Chinook bycatch

It's pollock versus kings: round two. An influential fisheries council meeting in Anchorage is debating whether to place an unprecedented limit on the number of Chinook salmon that pollock trawlers can accidentally kill in the Gulf of Alaska.

– Anchorage Daily News

Essay: Cut Gulf pollock bycatch of kings

But while king salmon returns have declined, the bycatch of kings in Gulf trawl fisheries has risen dramatically, last year topping 51,000 Chinook. About 80 percent were taken by the pollock fleet, the rest by trawl vessels targeting other groundfish.

– Kip Thomet

More:Gulf Bycatch

Charleston Fishermen's Memorial

The Charleston Fishermen's Memorial Committee has set Wednesday, April 6, as the deadline for submitting applications to add an eligible person's name to the Charleston Fishermen's Memorial at the Charleston Marina.

– Coos Bay World

Sportie's world: No nets = more fish

Last year, our state Department of Fish and Wildlife biologists were at a loss for an explanation of why the runs were at a record. Well, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure it out. There is no commercial netting of these two run of fish.

– Vancouver (Wash.) Columbian

The guy who escaped Crescent City harbor

A Coast Guard helicopter based out of Coos Bay, circling over the harbor filming, captured his escape on video and later put it up on YouTube, where it's had tens of thousands of views and been linked to from a number of news sites.

– North Coast Journal

Crescent City harbor: Six to eight months

"Boaters should not plan on using the inner boat basin on an interim basis for the next six to eight months."

– Crescent City Triplicate

Fish 1, Nut farmers 0

Several nut farmers in California have failed to convince a federal appeals court that irrigation curtailments aimed at protecting the threatened Delta smelt violate the U.S. Constitution.

– Capital Press

Sitka now open for herring

After days of waiting, seiners in Sitka Sound are finally chasing fish for keeps. The sac roe herring fishery opened at 1:40 p.m. Thursday.

– Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing in his blog: Deckboss

Alaska Fisheries Report

The North Pacific Council is taking up Gulf Chinook bycatch at its meeting this week in Anchorage. Alaskan fishermen are working together to help their counterparts in Japan; and Board of Fish nominations sail through the House Fisheries Committee. All that, and how many times must we remind people not to put seafood in their pants?

– KMXT, Kodiak

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