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Thread: Kenai fishing task force summary . . .

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    Default Kenai fishing task force summary . . .

    Ideas afloat — Kenai fishing task force hears plans to change management
    By Jenny Neyman
    Redoubt Reporter


    File photo by Patrice Kohl, Redoubt Reporter. A stringer of sockeye salmon were fished from the Kenai River at River Bend. The Upper Cook Inlet Task Force is mulling ways to better balance management of the Kenai’s sockeye and king salmon returns and fisheries.Redoubt

    “There’s nothing worse than not fishing then having to go to meetings to talk about not fishing.”
    That jest, from Jim Butler, a member of the Upper Cook Inlet Task Force, drew chuckles from the crowd assembled for the Jan. 14 meeting at the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska in Kenai. Though it was a fitting sentiment for the six hours of detailed, science-heavy, acronym-laden discussion, the trumping sentiment of the day was one of progress.

    “I think this is a starting point. It’s trying to make the best of Armageddon, if there’s a way to do that,” said task force member Ken Coleman, a set-net fisherman. “… We are trying to make sure there’s a place in the sun for both of us. How do we achieve that is the art of the deal. We’re heading that way, I think.”

    Three proposals to change fishery management plans for the 2013 fishing season were submitted for discussion. Each aim to prevent 2013 from being a repeat of the disastrous fishing season of 2012 — with sport and set-net fisheries shut down — should similar factors of a late and/or low king return amid a robust sockeye run again be the case.

    The rest of the article here: http://redoubtreporter.wordpress.com...ge-management/

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    In a contentious mixed stock fishery, the risk/reward analysis over the long term favors selective gear that permits the live capture and release of the non-target stock. The answer is to reward innovation in the east-side fishery. It's pretty dammed simple, really. Those who can effectively pass kings thru their fishery get to keep fishing.... those who can't don't.

    Fishermen as a group are pretty dam resourceful. With millions in forgone harvest at stake, someone will figure out a profitable way to make it happen.

    Reward them for it.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Exclamation Wow . .

    Quote Originally Posted by fishNphysician View Post
    . . the east-side fishery. It's pretty dammed simple, really. Those who can effectively pass kings thru their fishery get to keep fishing.... those who can't don't. . .


    Who knew?


    You should come up for the next meeting and educate us all . .

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    This whole situation is ironic to me.
    Here we are arguing, accusing, phone calls, e-mails, task force meetings, etc. and the late run of kenai kings is in way better shape than the early run of kings when no ESSN fishing has occurred for 30 years. Why are we not having a task force meeting on the early run of kenai kings that can't even make it's lowered escapement goals? Mr. Delaney is so sure sportfish has this king catch percentage thing figured out, but obviously they don't if a run that's been pretty much 100 percent harvested by them is in worse shape than the run where commercial fishing and personal use fishing occurs.
    I think Mr. Kramer's proposal is probably the closest thing to a good compromise. I think 11,000 kings is a little low for an OEG, 13,000 sounds better. All this talk about ESSN having to change their gear and all that would be a good argument if the run they fished was in worse shape than the run they don't fish. That's not even close to being true. With the new more accurate counter and the admission the old counter was biased high, it might not be out in left field to say this year's late run of kings had possibly the most kings spawning since kings started being counted in the Kenai.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 33outdoorsman View Post
    Here we are arguing, accusing, phone calls, e-mails, task force meetings, etc. and the late run of kenai kings is in way better shape than the early run of kings when no ESSN fishing has occurred for 30 years. Why are we not having a task force meeting on the early run of kenai kings that can't even make it's lowered escapement goals? Mr. Delaney is so sure sportfish has this king catch percentage thing figured out, but obviously they don't if a run that's been pretty much 100 percent harvested by them is in worse shape than the run where commercial fishing and personal use fishing occurs.

    Pretty much 100 percent? Do you think the incidental by catch of immature king salmon in the trawler fleet just might have a few early run Kenai kings in the mix? I'm pretty much 100 percent sure that sport fish isn't the only player in the demise of the early run Kenai kings.

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    It appears that those who are most politically influential in the area of Kenai King sport fishing are taking the same approach with the Early Run Kings as they are with the issue of turbidity on our river.... don't talk about it!!!

    I'm sure it's ok to talk about how those nasty trawlers are killing them all, or how global warming and ocean acidification means that they'll probably never come back so we should shut down all commercial fishing, but please stop talking about how we might have a few issues in our river. If someone finds out that many of those 'Late run' kings being caught in the middle river in July are actually early run fish, Mr. Penny might not be able to fish out in front of his house without restrictions. And if we talk about turbidity, he may have to row. So shut up will you? Let's keep talking about how those nasty setnetters keep catching all 13% of the late run Kings!

    I found this study on hook and release mortality from 1992, and found a few interesting paragraphs.

    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/FedAidPDFs/fms92-02.pdf

    “The slow exodus of early-run fish from the reach of river open to fishing makes them vulnerable to harvest throughout much of the later run. Since early-run fish can not be physically distinguished from late run fish, additional closures in the fishery may be necessary to protect them from harvest during the late run in years of a conservation shortfall.”

    I also thought that the next paragraph was interesting.
    "Of fish that were released more than once, the proportion that spawned was half of the overall rate, while the proportion of drop outs was three times higher. Additional hooking events and subsequent injuries may explain the abrupt downstream movements we observed in some fish that had penetrated several kilometers upstream. Furthermore, as catch rates increase in the sport fishery, mortality may also increase due to cumulative injury from multiple hooking events.”

    It seems that nobody paid attention to these two paragraphs.

    The first step in knowing what is happening with the early run is to INSIST that ADFG publish the early run king report ASAP. The late run report draft has been published at the behest of all user groups, however it seems that not as many people are pushing the department to release the report on early run kings. Would be nice to have recent, relavent data.... Sure is better than specualtion...

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    Quote Originally Posted by tcman View Post
    Pretty much 100 percent? Do you think the incidental by catch of immature king salmon in the trawler fleet just might have a few early run Kenai kings in the mix? I'm pretty much 100 percent sure that sport fish isn't the only player in the demise of the early run Kenai kings.
    I'm in agreement that more than just kenai sportfishermen are the cause of low king run returns. Trawlers are certainly a factor in a reduction in king returns. You would have a hard time convincing me though that trawler boats selectively catch early run kenai kings over late run kenai kings. Or that they catch kenai kings over other runs of kings in Alaska.

    I was trying to make a point about some of Mr. Delaney's comments and similar statements from quoted sportfishermen where they seem so confident that if we take bait away we reduce catch by this %, and if we close this section of the river we reduce by this %, and etc. If sportfish has the percentages so figured out then why is the early run in worse shape than the late run?

    Sportfish doesn't catch 100 percent of the early run kenai kings that return to Cook Inlet (that's why I said pretty much), the marine sport fishery gets a few, the kenai subsistence net gets a few, and ESSN may get a few stragglers, but for the most part KR sportfishermen are the primary harvesters of this run of fish and this run of fish is currently having a hard time making it's lowered escapement goals. The late run on the other hand came in 13,000 plus kings above it's low end recommended escapement goal.

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    I think it's rather funny that Delaney, a paid consultant of KRSA, an organization that is "dedicated to ensuring the sustainability of the world's premier sportfishing river - the Kenai." would be wasting his time trying to push his proposal. It seeks to restrict all of our fisheries when LRK escapements are predicted well inside the SEG, even ABOVE the MSY point, and liberalize ONLY the sport fishery when escapements are over the SEG. ADFG data shows that this run has always made the bottom end of the goal, and has chronically exceeded the upper end. Why would KRSA support a proposal that hurts our community and the sustainablity of our river?

    All this when the Early Run is in much worse shape, the Kenai could be listed as a Cat 5 polluted water body due to boat wake turbidity, and KPB anadromous stream protection ordinance is on the brink of collapse. Why isn't KRSA, with their legendary political connections and their 6-figure-earning staff focusing on the real sustainablilty issues rather than attempting to fullfill their founding member's dream of abolishing commercial industry in UCI? Why are they not at the forefront of the most pressing conservation issues in our area?

    The KRSA-supported proposal does nothing for the health of our King runs or our local or state economy. It makes no attempt to respect the task force mission statement of finding the best mix of fishing oportunity and the best means of attaining escapement goals in time of low abundance. In fact, it does quite the opposite. It seeks to further restrict ALL fishing opportunity while making it HARDER for ADFG to achieve escapement goals, which have both an upper and lower limit.


    Who exactly does Kenai River Sportfishing Association represent? Why do we continue to let them dictate fish policy?

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    The BOF meeting is set for next week and the Kenai late run will be a highlight topic.

    Here's the summary from the last Task Force meeting...

    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/re...ng_2_14_13.pdf

    Couple of interesting excerpts:


    Member Butler asked if the switch in goals is actually an increase. The department said that it was not a simple conversion so hard to say if the new goal is higher, lower or the same as the old TS-based goal.



    The department will make restrictions to the inriver users early to prevent closure of the fisheries

    Just curious to know if any of you regulars in this forum are planning to attend?
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    Yes. Attended all day. Was very disappointed to see the new BOF member submit KRSA's proposal, which was turned down at the task force (because it is more restrictive than the status quo) as his own RC. Guess it didn't take long to for him to show his cards. Very sad to see what this process has turned into.


    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/re...r_late_run.pdf

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    TB what is your proposal for the set net fishery for a year like 2013 when the Dept has already suggested the sport fishery will open without bait? Are you advocating that the commercial fisheries eat up the savings right down to the lower end of the goal?

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    If I'm not mistaken, part of the reason for this indication by ADFG that the sport fishery may start with no bait is to provide protection to early run fish, something that has NOTHING to do with the commercial fishery. My plan would be to manage toward our escapement goal, not the upper end of it. A plan that takes restrictive action when escapements are predicted to be above MSY is purely allocative.

    I did not submit a plan. That was the job of the task force, and I thought that their recommendations were sufficient. More importantly, if I did submit a written plan, I would submit it as my own. I would not ask a new member of the board of fish to sacrifice his/her ability to be impartial by submitting it as their own. Especially after the public process has deemed this proposal as inappropriate. While I realize that these backhanded tactics are business as usual for KRSA, it still stinks.

    As for your constant quest for parity, what part of the King plan gives the ESSN's fishing opportunity? That's right. None. THE KING SALMON MANAGEMENT PLAN ONLY RESTRICTS THE ESSN's. It gives them no fishing time. If we must have parity, why are you not advocating for increased fishing time for ESSN's on large king runs? Wouldn't that be fair?

    Answer- because the ESSN fishery is a sockeye fishery, and should be managed with respect to the sockeye plan. On years of large sockeye escapements and small king escapements, why is it so inconceivable that the fishery which specifically targets and harvests the most kings (sport fishery) be the most restricted? Especially since, unlike the ESSN's, participants in this fishery have all kinds of other harvest opportunity, as seen by the increase in guided sockeye trips last year.

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    Disappointing TB. Gotta go easier on the Koolaid.

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    Disappointing Bfish..........you can't make a more intelligent comment? So far I've seen Smithtb make pretty thoughtful post after post. While he obviously has a preference for ESSN, his posts are pretty good. Yours usually are as well.

    I have no agenda in this fight, I don't fish Kenai Kings period in any way (beyond I eat a pollock fish stick sometimes and some amount of Kenai kings likely died for it.) . I want them to be there for future generations. I see most impacts that absolutely affect the stock as in-river. The early run is primarily impacted by in-river takes and use. The late is combined impact by more users/sectors and has similar problems. I don't see committment by in-river users to solve the problem.

    I mean just on the fair and equitable issue I don't see how someone can support some of the recommendations of the blue ribbon task force as far as restrictions go. (in my opinion of course.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akbrownsfan View Post
    Disappointing Bfish..........you can't make a more intelligent comment? So far I've seen Smithtb make pretty thoughtful post after post. While he obviously has a preference for ESSN, his posts are pretty good. Yours usually are as well.

    I have no agenda in this fight, I don't fish Kenai Kings period in any way (beyond I eat a pollock fish stick sometimes and some amount of Kenai kings likely died for it.) . I want them to be there for future generations. I see most impacts that absolutely affect the stock as in-river. The early run is primarily impacted by in-river takes and use. The late is combined impact by more users/sectors and has similar problems. I don't see committment by in-river users to solve the problem.
    It's naive to think the early run has not been impacted by the trawl fishery. How many thousands of immature king salmon are discarded in that fishery? Do you think any of those kings are ER bound for the Kenai? As far as in river users are concerned, if you believe what Yukon has said, the guide assoc. put forth a proposal for the ER to be catch and release only. This was shot down by the public at large as "playing with our food." Apparently this thought was shared by BOF, and ADFG as a fishery that can sustain a selective harvest.

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    Oh my god! Point point at everyone. Before we had the EEZ there were more trawlers then now,and, more kings too. Everyone wants to blame eveyrone but them self. The only big change is the river, too many new homes on the river , too many cars dripping oil on the roads, too many boats running up and down the river, too many people playing with thier food. Step back be real, if you want the kings take the hard step first save the river. No more motors, rip out all the big new homes that were never there before, and go back to the number of boats on the river that were there in 1970. If you don't want that, then what do you want?
    Quote Originally Posted by penguin View Post
    It's naive to think the early run has not been impacted by the trawl fishery. How many thousands of immature king salmon are discarded in that fishery? Do you think any of those kings are ER bound for the Kenai? As far as in river users are concerned, if you believe what Yukon has said, the guide assoc. put forth a proposal for the ER to be catch and release only. This was shot down by the public at large as "playing with our food." Apparently this thought was shared by BOF, and ADFG as a fishery that can sustain a selective harvest.

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    I have been mending from 7 surgeries I had in January on a colon poison problem but I can verify that I talked to 3 people that are on the board of KRSA. None of them knew this new board member, in fact they asked me if I ever heard from him, just after he put his name into the hat for Brown"s position. I never did either so TB, you might be giving KRSA too much credit for controlling the BOF. Dr. Maw has a pretty good hold on the process also. With an odd number of voting members, you will always not get a tie in decisions. That;s all I got to say. Going back to my cave to mend up some more.
    All I do know is we need to do something but I'm at a loss except to stop fishing the late run for half the season, rather than all of it. Heck, the valley is hurting also and most of the rest of the state on kings.
    Something needs to be figured out by Fish and Game big time.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MGH55 View Post
    Oh my god! Point point at everyone. Before we had the EEZ there were more trawlers then now,and, more kings too. Everyone wants to blame eveyrone but them self. The only big change is the river, too many new homes on the river , too many cars dripping oil on the roads, too many boats running up and down the river, too many people playing with thier food. Step back be real, if you want the kings take the hard step first save the river. No more motors, rip out all the big new homes that were never there before, and go back to the number of boats on the river that were there in 1970. If you don't want that, then what do you want?
    So, do all these factors apply to the May/June run on the Kasilof as well?? This is an enhanced fishery and the run there has been dismal. I'm still going to listen to Tom Vania of ADFG who has gone on record saying the statewide decline of king numbers is a saltwater issue. This issue is bigger than the Kenai.

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    Yes they do! Look at what has changed even on the Anchor and every over exploited river in Alaska. So why point at the ESSN for every down turn on the Kenai River. What a joke!
    Quote Originally Posted by penguin View Post
    So, do all these factors apply to the May/June run on the Kasilof as well?? This is an enhanced fishery and the run there has been dismal. I'm still going to listen to Tom Vania of ADFG who has gone on record saying the statewide decline of king numbers is a saltwater issue. This issue is bigger than the Kenai.

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    On the Anchor we had 20 people then, 200 now! Anchor fish don't even know what a gillnet is, but could it be those ESSN'ers or even those drifters in the inlet. With all the set nets how can any kings make it to Deep Creek. Yes, it is lots of changes. Don't blame others look inward, be honest, then ask what I can do to make things better. Don't ask other to give if you won't!

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