Monday, June 13, 2011


Surely you caught the top news story today in Alaska: the public release of thousands of e-mails from Sarah Palin's time as governor. Deckboss couldn't resist trolling through the e-mails for something interesting. Here's a 2008 exchange between Palin and Cora Crome, now Cora Campbell, who was fisheries adviser to Palin and now is Alaska's fish and game commissioner.

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

Fed guidelines would boost fish farms

The Obama administration released new guidelines that would make it easier to farm fish in federal waters, a move that could transform the nation's coasts and the food Americans will consume in years to come.

– San Francisco Chronicle

Video for Bering crab share hopefuls

Crew members who want to invest in the Bering Sea crab fisheries will benefit from a DVD available for free from the Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers, a harvester trade group. The DVD is a videotape of a May 3 workshop on financing and purchasing options for skippers and crew who want to buy catch shares of Bering Sea king and snow crab.
The workshop was held in Seattle and video conferenced to Kodiak and Anchorage. Eligible skippers and crew can benefit from an $8 million federal loan program that will finance up to 80 percent of the cost of purchasing crab quota shares, and can be repaid over 25 years.

Get free copies of the entire crew workshop DVD via email by

California water wars, cont.

Delta water users have sued to block a temporary decrease in pumping meant to save thousands of salmon, a move that seems destined to raise the stakes in an escalating water war.

– San Jose, Calif., Mercury News

California fishermen declining

The California Department of Fish and Game handed out just 706 commercial salmon licenses this year, down by half from 2005.

– L.A. Times

Scottish salmon shrinking

A major study of the iconic species in Scotland has revealed that the average grilse, young salmon which have been at sea for just one year before swimming back to their home rivers to spawn, are a third less heavy and have shrunk by nearly a tenth.

– Telegraph, U.K.

Petersburg shipyard open

Following two months of work to clean, organize and fix-up the old Petersburg Shipwrights, Piston & Rudder Service Inc. hauled out their first vessel.

– Petersburg Pilot

E. Canada salmon farms OK'd

Conservation and community groups are criticizing the Nova Scotia government's approval of a salmon aquaculture project in St. Mary's Bay.

– Canadian Press

FEMA grant for Oregon tsunami damage

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has announced a disaster relief grant of nearly $1.2 million to Oregon's Curry County to help repair and replace public infrastructure damaged by the tsunami waves from the devastating Japanese earthquake.

– The Republic

Bristol Bay dockside examinations

The Coast Guard is sending examiners to Dillingham and King Salmon to begin dockside examinations through June 23.

– Coast Guard

Alaska Fisheries Report

No commercial king fishing on the Yukon again this summer, Area M fishermen skip the first opener in solidarity with AYK fishermen. All that and how the lack of a Coastal Zone Management program might affect your fishing town.

– KMXT, Kodiak (Scroll down.)


Tuesday, June 14, 2011


The North Pacific Fishery Management Council \voted to establish the first ever limit on Chinook salmon bycatch in the Gulf of Alaska pollock fishery. In 2010 the groundfish fleet caught over 51,000 Chinook salmon. This all-time high number reinvigorated a call from coastal Alaskans and members of the NPFMC to pursue a limit for future years. While a limit on Chinook bycatch was established for the Bering Sea pollock fishery in 2009, this will be the first salmon bycatch restriction in the Gulf of Alaska pollock fishery.

– Press release

More:Chinook Bycatch

Fish-hauling plane crashes

Federal aviation officials said a Universal Airlines plane crash landed in Cold Bay without landing gear extended.

– Anchorage Daily News

Tongass is a salmon forest

I live in Sitka, and when I look at the Tongass, I see salmon because I'm a salmon fisherman, and the Tongass is first and foremost a salmon forest.

– Spencer Severson is a salmon troller who lives in Sitka.

Fishermen hope for Pollock B

Pollock B season is currently underway, and as usual, fishermen are hoping that schools are big and close by.

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

Overfishing hurts everyone

Both commercial fishermen and the politicians that do their bidding must recognize that global overfishing by many nations now threatens the oceans and the economies that depend on them.

– New York Times

Silent killers of Puget Sound

Old gill nets littering the sea floor are silent killers of the Puget Sound.


Dumping of bycatch 'immoral'

The dumping of prized fish catches off the Irish coast due to EU quota limits has been described as "insane and immoral" by a government minister.

– The Independent, Ireland

Shares make Maine fishermen money

Early reports indicate that fishermen are earning more money under the sector or "catch share" system despite catching lower volumes of fish, though regulators are hesitant to credit the sector model alone.

– MaineBizDaily

Pacific Council in Spokane

At its meeting in Spokane, the council will debate whether to develop an ecosystem-based management plan that includes forage fish, the smaller fish on which larger fish depend for food.

– Public Service News


Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Not a single chick has survived this year at the world's largest colony of Caspian terns. Researchers call it "complete colony failure."

– Pacific Fishing correspondent Cassandra Marie Profita reporting in Ecotrope, Oregon Public Broadcasting

Port Moller test fishing results

Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Association will be posting results of Port Moller test fishing on a regular basis. You can see the reports

NW dam removal OK'd

PacifiCorp has received regulatory approval to begin removing Condit Dam on Washington's White Salmon River in October, opening the Columbia River tributary to salmon, steelhead and lamprey for the first time in nearly a century.

– The Oregonian

B.C. leader may go to court over fish protest

B.C. Conservative Party Leader John Cummins says he could be involved in a court case related to the aboriginal fisheries at the same time as he is campaigning this fall in the next provincial election.

– Globe and Mail, Toronto

No subsistence on Yukon River

The first wave of king salmon hasn't even hit the Yukon River yet but the Alaska Department of Fish and Game isn't taking any chances. The state has already closed subsistence fishing in the lower Yukon.

– Yukon News Miner

Report: World needs more fish farms

The world needs to farm more fish and algae to meet the world's growing demand for animal products, according to a report released on Tuesday by international NGO Conservation International.

– The Guardian, U.K.

Stricter rules for Norway fish farms

Norway, the world's largest salmon supplier, is studying stricter rules on fish farming along its 13,000-mile mainland coast to cut the risk of viruses while allowing industry growth.

– San Francisco Chronicle

Gulf of Mexico dead zone grows

Scientists predict this year's Gulf of Mexico dead zone will grow larger than any they have ever measured.


Alaska Dungeness season open

Adam Messmer, a state fishery manager in Juneau, tells Deckboss 126 permit holders have signed for the Dungeness harvest so far.

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

Alaska fisheries hiring non-Alaskans

Seafood season is here. As such, the state is encouraging seasonal hiring. While the hopes are residents will be hired for these jobs, that continues to be a tall order.

– Juneau Empire


Thursday, June 16, 2011


While the federal government wrangles over what to do with sea lions in the Columbia River Gorge, state wildlife officers have a new trick for scaring them away from docks.


Bill would help fishermen retire

Senators Lisa Murkowski and Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) introduced a bill that gives commercial fisherman added flexibility when it comes to funds they've set aside for renovations or new construction of their fishing boats.

– SitNews, Ketchikan

House seeks to stop frankenfish

The House voted to prohibit the Food and Drug Administration from approving genetically modified salmon for human consumption.

– Sacramento Bee

Darigold guilty for fish die-off

The dead fish showed up not long after Salmon Days, the annual festival celebrating the return of Chinook to the troubled urban stream that cuts through Issaquah.

– Seattle Times

Boat sunk for insurance?

A fishing boat owner and crew have been charged with conspiring to sink the vessel off the coast of Cape May in order to collect a $400,000 insurance payment.


Judge rules against irrigators

A judge refused to order water pumps back to full blast at the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, denying a restraining order sought by farm-water officials.

– Frensno Bee

Former Alaska fish commish guilty

Former Alaska Department of Fish & Game commissioner Denby Lloyd, 56, arrested for drunken driving in August 2010, pleaded guilty in Juneau Superior Court on Wednesday to driving under the influence as part of an agreement reached by his attorney Louis Menendez and the City and Borough of Juneau.

– Juneau Empire

Acidic ocean study funds threatened

Part of the budget is funding for NOAA's Integrated Ocean Acidification Program in the amount of $11.6 million. What it comes down to is funding of monitoring and research of seawater chemistry, something that is vital if we are ever going to figure out how to deal with changes in the ocean that many people feel are a result of ocean acidification.

– Amy Grondin, F/V Duna

More:Integrated Ocean Acidification Research Funding

San Francisco eyes ban on fish – goldfish

San Francisco's ever-active Animal Control and Welfare Commission has renewed its push for a pet sale ban in the city - only this time, it even covers goldfish.

The idea is to put the squeeze on puppy and kitten mills that supply pet stores, and to discourage "impulse buys" of hamsters and other small pets that often wind up being dumped at shelters.

– San Francisco Chronicle


Friday, June 17, 2011


It's the first time in at least 20 years to experiment using different types of gear to establish a commercial fishery for what most people consider a trash fish.

– The Oregonian

Another cod gets MSC nod

A cod fishery that was close to collapse only a few years ago has recovered and was today certified as a sustainable and well-managed fishery.


McD's touts MSC tag

McDonald's in Europe said on Wednesday that beginning October its fish sandwiches sold across the continent will have a blue-eco label.



UFA picks leadership

The United Fishermen of Alaska (UFA) announced the reelection of Arni Thomson who resides in Anchorage, and represents the Alaska Crab Coalition, as president of UFA.


One Kodiak sockeye run strong

Another strong run of reds this year for the Afognak River drainage prompted the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to increase the bag and possession limits from five to 10 sockeye salmon as an incentive for sport fishermen to help avoid over-escapement in that system.

– Kodiak Daily Mirror

Alaska Fisheries Report

Coming up this week, decisions and non-decisions by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council on salmon bycatch in the Gulf and Bering Sea; the Chignik red run is going strong and the Kodiak pink forecast is great.

– KMXT, Kodiak (Scroll down)

Video contradicts salmon farmers

New video footage released casts serious doubt on claims that a proposed 3,000 ton salmon farm at Plover Point in the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve will not harm marine life.

– Rupert Daily Online

Spike Walker has new book

On the Edge of Survival is a great read for anyone who has fished on the ocean or spent time in Alaska. The book is also a tribute to the risks Coast Guard helicopter crews take to save the lives of sailors who make foolish mistakes.

– Tacoma Daily News


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