South Central Halibut limit will be reduced to 1 in 2012 if secretary of commerce signs off on Halibut catch sharing plan!!!! The plan is going to reduce the guideline harvest level (GHL) for 3A by 30%, give it to the commercials and then let them lease it back to sportsfishermen (called a guided angler fish (GAF)).
Unless we get enough letters sent out and raise hell we are going to see lots of charters fail next year, especially places like Deep creek were they can't offer season long combo trips.
This has nothing to do with the Halibut resource or number of fish caught in 3A as we have been under our GHL every year.
Halibut Anglers: Act by Sept 6th or your fish will be cut in half
The Feds Want A Bite Of Your Fish
Reducing the number
of boats and the bag
limit: This year new
regulations restrict your
choice of boats available to
take you halibut fishing. Now,
in addition to the reduced
number of boats, the federal
government is trying to cut
your bag limit in half for
guided recreational anglers.
What that means to
you, the recreational
fisherman: Right now, you
are allowed 2 fish per day of
any size in Southcentral Alaska. If the federal
rule passes, the daily bag limit would drop to 1
fish per guided angler and could ultimately
drop to 1 fish of a maximum size per person.
Is this “Fair & Equitable”?
Our laws say it’s supposed to be. Our current
allocation was deemed “fair and equitable" by
the Secretary of Commerce and the Courts…
yet that is now being cut by another 30%. The
proposed rule will reallocate your fish to the
commercial sector. Then it allows
the angler to "rent" the fish back.
Is this about Conservation?
No! The halibut you are losing will
be caught by the commercial fleet.
You should be angry!
What about the bycatch?
Trawl vessels drag nets on the
ocean floor or in mid-water and
scrape up everything, pick out the
fish they want and throw the rest
overboard.. The total halibut
discarded in 2010 was 11,433,055
million pounds of dead fish (mostly
by the trawl fisheries). This is more
than the total recreational catch.
This should be a concern to both recreational
and commercial fishermen who fish hook-andline.
Who will this affect? It affects you and the
entire Alaskan economy. The true impact is
unknown, because the feds are using data that
is 13 years old. They don't even know how
much current regulations have reduced the
halibut catch, nor the dollars lost to the state.
This is not Hopeless! What Can You Do?
1. It is critical that you submit a letter before the comment period ends on September 6th.
Address comments to: Glenn Merrill, NMFS, Attn: Ellen Sebastian. P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK
99802–1668 or Fax: 907–586–7557. In your letter, reference federal rule #0648–BA37 and ask
them to support your current bag limit.
2. Learn more by visiting the Alaska Charter Association website at www.alaskacharter.org,
where you can print, fax or mail a sample comment letter. Make a donation through the ACA
website and contribute to the battle to preserve the recreational halibut fishery.
3. Contact these people ask questions, make comments, and fax or email letters:
Acting Secretary of Commerce, Rebecca Blank- http://www.commerce.gov/contact-us
Dr. Jane Lubchenco, NOAA Chief Administrator- firstname.lastname@example.org, Fax (202) 408-9674
Alaska residents contact Governor Sean Parnell, Senator Lisa Murkowski, Senator Mark Begich,
Rep. Don Young. Look up contact information here: www.electedlist.com/Alaska.html
(To read the full "Catch Sharing Plan": http://www.fakr.noaa.gov/sustainable...ibut/sport.htm)