Monday, August 11, 2014
RUSSIA SKEWS SALMON MARKET
Alaska's seafood industry is getting caught in the middle of a power struggle between Russia and western nations.
– Pacific Fishing columnist Lauren Rosenthal, reporting for KUCB
Pink harvest builds
Southeast Alaska's commercial salmon purse seine fleet is on track to hit or exceed pre-season forecasts for the region's pink salmon harvest. Meanwhile, some hatchery chum salmon returns have been a disappointment.
Banner year for Columbia salmon
Aug. 1 marked the opening of the long-awaited "fall" fishing season on the mainstem Columbia River, which this year is expected to see a record number of fall Chinook salmon, a run of coho spawners forecast to be 156 percent of the 2004-2013 average and a summer steelhead return similar to the 10-year average.
– The Dalles Chronicle
B.C. mine was warned of danger
The international consulting group that designed the ill-fated British Columbia tailings pond dam for Mount Polley Mine says they had cautioned the mine company and British Columbia officials that its use was greater than it was designed for.
– Cordova Times
Public comment on Pebble
EPA Region 10 requests comment on a proposal to protect one of the world's most valuable salmon fisheries, in Bristol Bay, Alaska, from the risks posed by a mine at the Pebble deposit.
– U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
B.C. sockeye opener
Today is the first day on the water for this year's commercial fishermen.
GOP candidates snub mining regulators
As millions of Fraser River sockeye salmon head for spawning beds polluted by a brew of metal toxins oozing from the Mount Polley gold/copper mine disaster in British Columbia, Republican candidates vying for US Senate want environmental regulators to butt out of Alaska's mining development decisions.
– Pacific Fishing columnist Laine Welch, reporting for The Fish Site
World's top seafood companies named
The still nascent global seafood sector is highly fragmented across continents and markets, but some companies have emerged as leaders, in one field or across several activities.
– Undercurrent News
Resolution supports Save Our Salmon
In its regular August meeting, the Dillingham City Council passed a resolution saying it may file a friend of the court brief on behalf of the Lake and Peninsula Borough as they appeal their Save Our Salmon Initiative.
Whales unfazed by alarms
A study on the effectiveness of commercial whale alarms in deterring the ocean giants from fishing nets and lines measured no response from migrating humpback whales.
– Sydney Morning Herald
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
SALMON PRICE DROP EXPECTED
Russia's ban on Norwegian fish imports will likely lead to a big decrease in salmon prices globally.
– The Fish Site
B.C. spill downplayed
B.C. Mines Minister Bill Bennett says the Mount Polley tailings dam collapse is not an environmental disaster, equating it to the "thousands" of avalanches that happen annually in B.C.
– Vancouver Sun
Cheaper Fraser sockeye
What is expected to be a massive sockeye salmon return on the Fraser River could mean consumers will pay less for salmon.
– Times Colonist
Outreach on Halibut handling
A new project aims to increase halibut survival rate across the Southeast and Southcentral regions in Alaska.
Assessing acidification's risk
Two U.S. senators, Mark Begich of Alaska and Maria Cantwell of Washington, say they will offer legislation requiring the government to "prioritize what fisheries and fish habitat are most at risk" from ocean acidification.
– Pacific Fishing columnist Wesley Loy, writing in his blog: Deckboss
Opinion: mine spill's a 'thunderous warning'
We certainly understand Canada's desire to make use of its natural resources, but that shouldn't and cannot be allowed to come at the cost of Alaska's. Runoff could threaten not only salmon waterways and the fishing industry, but it could also threaten a way of life that, for some, reaches back thousands of years.
– Juneau Empire
WDFW director resigns
After nearly six years at the helm, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) Director Phil Anderson has informed the state Fish and Wildlife Commission he will resign from his position, effective Dec. 31.
– Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
New Era for Tongass
A new era focused on sustainable young-growth management is underway on the 17-million-acre Tongass National Forest.
Pushback on feds' Klamath decision
In the wake of a federal agency's decision not to release Trinity River water to improve conditions for fall chinook salmon entering the Lower Klamath River, local tribes, environmental groups and salmon advocates are crying foul and organizing protests planned for next week in Sacramento.
– Del Norte Triplicate
Huge algae bloom closes in on Florida
Algae bloom toxic in nature and covering a massive area, as big as one-and-a-half times the size of Rhode Island, is moving towards the Gulf of Mexico. The algae bloom is headed straight for the west coast of Florida.
– Maine News
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
PEBBLE HEARING DRAWS HUNDREDS
The fight over the proposed Pebble mine came to the Egan Center on Tuesday at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's public hearing before a crowd of hundreds.
– Alaska Dispatch News
B.C. salmon opener spotty
From his spot on the water near Abbotsford yesterday, Bob McKamey says he nabbed about 120 salmon, but his counterparts near Steveston caught up to 500.
Vessel grounds in Juneau
Coast Guard pollution responders arrived on scene and observed a small oil sheen. The hull of Pacific Queen sustained minor damage due to grounding.
– Coast Guard press release
USCG adds fee for vessel documentation
Boaters who own federally documented vessels will soon be paying a little extra.
– Waterway Guide
Mine spill water ban lifted
A drinking water ban that followed a mine tailings spill in British Columbia was mostly lifted Tuesday and fish from the area were declared safe to eat — the latest signs that health officials believe the spill won't have a significant impact on people or aquatic life.
– Vancouver Sun
Alaska fisherman accused of wasting salmon
A Kotzebue commercial fisherman faces charges of waste after he left more than 100 salmon caught in a gillnet to rot, Alaska State Troopers say.
– Alaska Dispatch News
Ferry comes to fishing boat's aid
The Alaska Ferry Tustumena lived up to its nickname Trusty Tusty on Monday. While traveling from Sand Point to Old Harbor, the ferry helped tow a fishing vessel to safety.
B.C. tribal groups differ on mining
Some Alaska tribal organizations say Aug. 4's dam break at a British Columbia mine shows what could happen at proposed near-border mines. But some B.C. tribal governments strongly support development.
Chillin' in Bristol Bay
The Community Development Quota Organization for the Bristol Bay region has long been focused on helping Bristol Bay's local commercial fishermen. KDLG's Luke Brummer reports on one program that could help fishermen get a chilling bonus.
Salmon defenders question federal official
A coalition of local tribal members and Klamath River advocates gathered in Redding on Tuesday during a press conference on California's widespread wildfires to confront Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell about the recent decision to cease pre-emptive releases to prevent fish kills on two North Coast rivers.
Thursday, August 14, 2014
RUSSIAN BAN'S 'DIRECT HIT'
Russia last week banned imports of food for one year from the US, Canada, Europe, Norway and Australia due to sanctions they imposed due to its aggressive actions in Ukraine. That makes for a direct hit to Alaska seafood which last year exported nearly 20 million pounds of seafood to Russia, valued at more than $60 million.
– Pacific Fishing columnist Laine Welch, reporting for Alaska Fish Radio
CA advances massive water bond
California voters will be asked to authorize $7.5 billion to bolster the state's water supply, infrastructure and ecosystems in November, as lawmakers and Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday struck a long-sought deal to move a new water bond to the ballot.
– Sacramento Bee
Inside Fraser test fishery
This day's 30-minute test fishery starts at 5:15 p.m., just past slack tide, as more than 200 metres of nylon gillnet are rolled off the stern section, forming a long wavering curtain of death to fish swimming its way.
– Vancouver Sun
OR crab haul below average
Over the past decade, Oregon commercial crab fishermen have averaged landing about 20 million pounds of crab. This year's numbers are expected to end below average at about 14.35 million pounds.
– The World
Researchers return from 'Great Pacific Garbage Patch'
During the trip, they collected fish samples and other material, which will be studied to see how plastic affects the ocean's food chain, among other things.
– Long Beach Press Telegram
Kotzebue chum fishery rebounds
Kotzebue is in the midst of one of its best commercial chum seasons ever. That's due to an exceptionally strong run size.
– Alaska Public Media
Skipper abandons ship, disappears
Police suspect the fisherman had not perished with his vessel but is in hiding somewhere in the San Francisco area.
– Shipwreck Log
Opinion: agency's reducing bycatch
In the past several years, the council has focused the bulk of its attention on bycatch reduction, while still maintaining commercial fisheries that account for more than half of the nation's seafood production and are critically important to Alaska's coastal economies.
– Anchorage Daily News
Congressman: diversion could doom salmon
In July alone Reclamation sent 152,000 acre feet of water from Trinity Lake into the Sacramento River basin, and North Coast salmon could pay the price for this error.
– Congressman Jared Huffman, editorializing in the Times-Standard
Dock fish sales working
This method of selling combats falling fish prices as it cuts out the middle man and is more attractive to consumers as the fish is cheaper than supermarket products and is guaranteed to be fresh.
– Fish Information Site
Friday, August 15, 2014
'SALMON CANNON' LOBS FISH
It sounds like something out of Monty Python, but the salmon cannon is actually an ingenious solution to problems with fish migration.
More fishing on Kuskokwim
There's a sigh of relief on the middle Kuskokwim River as the silver salmon have arrived and smokehouses are firing up. The run appears to be looking good, and the Department of Fish and Game says the river is ready for more commercial fishing.
– Alaska Public Media
B.C. Sockeye pass slide area
More than 37-thousand sockeye salmon have made it past a blockage on the Tahltan River in British Columbia this summer.
Feds tour Klamath
Two days after confronting the U.S. Secretary of the Interior in Redding on last month's decision to end fish-kill preventative releases on the Klamath and Trinity rivers, tribal and government officials met with the federal official responsible on Thursday to persuade him to reconsider.
Law of the Sea debated
In the last statewide primary debate, Alaska Republican senate candidates discussed their stance on the international Law of the Sea treaty.
Alaska Fisheries Report
Coming up this week, a Kotzebue man is cited for wasting salmon while two Unalaska cannery workers are charged with air pollution. Canadians could use some positive fishery news, and is the newest nightspot in Alaska's top fishing port destined to become "an old-man fisherman bar"?
No fix for steel float
The million dollar steel float in Gustavus was less than two years old when a storm ripped it from its piling in January. Seven months later, the state still doesn't know what caused the failure and doesn't have funds to replace it.
Insurance lacking in B.C. mine spill
Imperial Metals' $15-million property and business interruption insurance coverage is likely to fall short of the cleanup cost of the collapse of its mine waste dam at Mount Polley.
– Times Colonist
Stellar fishing continues at Noyo Harbor
Noyo Harbor's commercial salmon harvest last year set an all-time record at $7.4 million, up from $2.7 million in 2012. Fishermen have been having a magnificent year in 2014.
– The Mendocino Beacon
Sales up, income down for High Liner Foods
Profits are down at one of North America's largest seafood businesses as Nova Scotia-based High Liner Foods Inc., slumped during the second quarter. While sales were up at the Lunenburg-headquartered company, net income was down nearly 50 per cent.
– CBC News