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Thread: action alert for King retention on the kenai Act fast please

  1. #1
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Default action alert for King retention on the kenai Act fast please

    From: Ken Federico, Chair of the South Central Alaska Dipnetters association.

    Dear Mr. Chairman and members,
    I am writing to you to voice my concern on one of the two standing members looking to get re-appointed to the BOF.
    Tom Klubertson has been pretty impartial on his first term on the BOF. Thank you Tom.
    My concern is with Vince Webster. Vince has served 2,3 year terms on the board and I believe it is time for some fresh blood. My reasoning behind this is concerning RC 75 and RC88 from the most recent BOF meetings held here in Anchorage last month. Those RC's were in relation to the Kenai River return of King Salmon.
    RC 75 went through the public hearing process concerning all parties sharing in either the pain or abundance of the returning King salmon to the Kenai. Only after public testimony ended did Mr Webster submit RC 88. I believe it was submitted on March 21 if I am not mistaken. What Mr. Webster submitted was cut out retention of King Salmon for dipnetters only, when the Fish and Game department estimated escapement at 30,000 kings. That is not retention, mind you but escapement. Historically, that is a pretty good escapement number for the second run of kings.
    No other use group had to give up anything. I believe Mr. Webster abused his position by waiting until after public testimony to submit RC 88.
    FYI, dipnetters on the Kenai take an average of 875 kings a year. Not much of a take if you ask me. I am the first to urge Fish and Game, in season, when the king run is low, like last year, to stop retention of Kings by dippers. All members of the public should do their part for the resource in times of need.
    That is why myself and 98 percent of my membership,225 at last count, would like another member of the public to serve, instead of Mr. Webster.

    Thank you for your time and consideration,

    Ken Federico, SCADA
    Louie.flora@akleg.gov. Any emails sent will be copied and given to all members of the fisheries committee and the resource committees when they take up reappointment of both BOF members. Louie must have them by tonight, April 3 since fisheries meets thursday, April 4th.
    The resource committee meets friday, the 5th at 1:00 till 3:00 and here is that aide's e-mail.Trevor.fulton@akleg.gov
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  2. #2

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    Are you aware that Dennis Gease, the PU task force representative, proposed and supported the idea of no King retention in the PU fishery during times of low abundance during the task force?

    I think that most Alaskans realize that these fish aren't as abundant as our sockeye, and would be ok with not keeping kings unless there is a surplus. Especially if it would allow other users who depend on kings an opportunity to harvest. I don't think many people depend on dipnetting kings, and with the sockeye bag limits as liberal as they are, no one should be left wanting.

  3. #3

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    I really would be fine without king kept by any personal use or sport or commercial for a few years. It is an excellent response smithtb there are plenty of reds available let the king fishery come back.

  4. #4
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    I'm all for not keeping kings when the run is weak but with that RC 88, no one but dippers would have to give up the i king allowed. No other user group would take a hit but dippers. Let me say I urged Tom Vania last year to not let dippers retain kings due to such a poor run last year. Dennis Gease and myself talked about agreeing to give up king retention on low abundance but that went along with no bait for rod and reel and limited hours for setnetters.
    Another note is even Webster didn't vote for his own RC after Johnstone called a recess to discuss this very thing during the BOF.
    Sometimes I keep a king and sometimes I release them. What I'm saying is every body should share in the pain or abundance, not just one user group. I think it's time for some fresh blood on the board. Last year I was even bummed for the setnetters having to sit it out but the run comes first. Webster was at the task force but never suggested dippers only sitting it out on kings.Until after public testimony was done at the BOF
    Next!!! I'm also kind of curious on what the mortality rate is when released from a dipnet? I don't think any studies have been done on that.
    I gave up rod and reel on the Kenai for kings when they went to 35 horsepower years ago. So when the run is strong, I might keep a small one but let the hogs go. Heck I dipped for 8 years before I even caught one so it's not like it is an annual thing.
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  5. #5

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    So you're for more fresh blood that, say, does whatever KRSA wants? Isn't that who's leading the charge to get rid of Webster? I hear they've been pretty actively lobbying against him in Juneau. They also issued an "Action Alert" yesterday, however theirs was to "Save the Kings", not retain them

    The dipnet fishery is the single largest contributer to the slight rise in KRLRK exploitation rates over the last several years. Although total harvest numbers are not that high, they have increased as a percentage much more than any other fishery. The harvest numbers went from an average of 0 in the 80's (no PU fishery) to an average of 160 fish per year in the 90's to an average of over 1000 fish per year from 2001-2011, and they have stayed high despite the recent decline in returns (no doubt due to the unrestricted growth of the fishery). Obviously 2012 is excluded here.

    Why is it so unfair that this relatively new Sockeye fishery that could easily selectively harvest only Reds be asked first to turn Kings back? This may enable the historic fisheries in the area (that the community has depended on for many years) that either depend on King harvest (inriver sport) or can't aviod incedental catch (gillnet) to keep fishing. Especially when you consider that closure of the gillnets increases the likelyhood of overescaping our river with Sockeye - something that is proven to decrease future yields, which the PU fishery depends on.

    I value the PU fishery. Many of my family and friends depend on it, and that's important to me. The UCI salmon fishery was a fully allocated fishery before PU was created, however all user groups have adapted and made a place for it. Perhaps you could be a little flexible.

  6. #6
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    TB, Fresh blood with a commercial tilt would not bother me in the least. Making dippers release Kings when no one else is taking some sort of step-down measures makes me and many others feel like second class citizen's. I wrote to the legislature asking for change but if even if he gets re-appointed, it does put him on notice that he represents all Alaskans, not just a few selected.
    From what I have heard last night, both committee's are not taking up the re-appointments. The fisheries committee only met for 1/2 hour thursday and the resource will use their two hours concerning oil and gas issues. today. I talked with both aides yesterday.
    We have been having historical red runs for a number of years. I still don't buy the boogyman notion that over escapement leads to decreased future yields bit that is for another thread. But that is just me.
    When you have 30,000 to 35,000 household permits issued, even 1000 kings is not a great number. About 5,000 of those permits were not used at all. So make it 30,000. That means 29,000 permits never caught a king. As I stated before, during lean years I'm the first guy telling the department to shut us down on king retention. What is fair is fair. BTW, KRSA has their own agenda. I'm sure UCIDA is going full bore as well down there
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by thewhop2000 View Post
    TB, Fresh blood with a commercial tilt would not bother me in the least. Making dippers release Kings when no one else is taking some sort of step-down measures makes me and many others feel like second class citizen's. I wrote to the legislature asking for change but if even if he gets re-appointed, it does put him on notice that he represents all Alaskans, not just a few selected.
    From what I have heard last night, both committee's are not taking up the re-appointments. The fisheries committee only met for 1/2 hour thursday and the resource will use their two hours concerning oil and gas issues. today. I talked with both aides yesterday.
    We have been having historical red runs for a number of years. I still don't buy the boogyman notion that over escapement leads to decreased future yields bit that is for another thread. But that is just me.
    When you have 30,000 to 35,000 household permits issued, even 1000 kings is not a great number. About 5,000 of those permits were not used at all. So make it 30,000. That means 29,000 permits never caught a king. As I stated before, during lean years I'm the first guy telling the department to shut us down on king retention. What is fair is fair. BTW, KRSA has their own agenda. I'm sure UCIDA is going full bore as well down there
    Overescapement leading to decreased future yields is not a "boogeyman notion". Carrying capacity is a scientific fact. We have years of harvest, escapement, and return data for the Kenai that show the decrease in yields from large escapements. ADFG has the data points on a chart. I can send it to you if you'd like.

    You are right. Out of 30,000 permits, 1,000 kings is not a large number. Just like out of 500,000 reds, 1,000 kings is not a large number. But on a total expected return of say, 30,000 Kings , which only leaves a possible harvest of a MAX of 15,000, 1,000 fish is significant. You are right though, as a part of the total PU harvest, the King harvest is very insignificant. If losing .2% of your total harvest for the health of the fishery as a whole makes you feel like a "second class citizen", you have bigger problems!

  8. #8
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Thanks for bringing this to our attention Ken. Now I have another BOF measure to support.
    I believe this is a good idea. Dippers don't need the kings and can easily release them. Like others have said there are plenty of reds why tax a declining resource even more?
    On the boat I dip from we have had as many as three kings in the boat in one short afternoon of dipping. I would guess harvest would be a lot higher but many dippers voluntarily choose to release them.
    This is the newest fishery and the one least dependent on it. Give the kings a break!
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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    Quote Originally Posted by thewhop2000 View Post
    I'm also kind of curious on what the mortality rate is when released from a dipnet? I don't think any studies have been done on that.
    .
    Surely it can be no different than hooking one with a k-16 and netting it and releasing it, likely easier on it than a sport catch and release.

    And yes, I called you Shirley.

  10. #10

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    KRSA'S call to action. I took the libery of adding some corrections in red.

    ACTION NEEDED IMMEDIATELY – HELP SAVE THE KINGS

    April 4th, 2013
    This is an IMMEDIATE CALL TO ACTION!
    Kenai River Sportfishing Association supporters:
    We ask that you read this important update and take action against the appointment of Vince Webster to the Alaska Board of Fisheries by the Governor.
    Vince Webster’s appointment needs confirmation by the Legislature, with a vote coming Monday, April 8. We need your assistance in voicing opposition to his confirmation. KRSA does not support the appointment of Vince Webster to the Alaska Board of Fisheries for the following reasons:
    • He directly participated in precariously and unnecessarily lowering the escapement goal of Kenai River king salmon during a time of record low abundance and uncertain future production.
    Not True - ADF&G set this new escapement goal. It is their job, not the BOF's to set SEG's. This goal was scientifically vetted and peer reviewed. ADF&G set the SEG. The BOF simply voted to adopt it into the language of the management plan, at the recommendation of ADFG.
    • As an experienced member on the BOF, Mr. Webster was tasked to co-chair a Cook Inlet king salmon task force. Its mission was essentially to identify the best mix of fishing opportunity during times of low king salmon abundance and the best means of attaining the escapement goal. Unfortunately, the final work product of the task force failed. The process he was tasked to oversee ended in deadlock.
    The fact that Mr. Webster and Mr. Kluberton actually took time to come to the Peninsula and learn about our diverse fishery from scientists and users is a MAJOR point in their favor. It has been a long time since our area has seen BOF meetings of any kind. The task force was a success - it was the motivator that got ADFG to produce a ton of new, relavant data which changed everyone's perception of the King issue. The only reason that there wasn't more consensus is because several KRSA-strong members, most notably the only NON-RESIDENT & PAID CONSULTANT on the task force was not willing to budge from their very allocative proposal and very anti-setnetting views.
    • The failure of the task force rests in large part with Mr. Webster. A canceled December meeting wasted valuable time that could have been used to address ADFG processes to establish escapement goals. Subsequent meetings offered no forward progress and squandered valuable time, resources and energy of participants.
    First, Tom Kluberton helped create and led the SUCESSFUL task force meetings. Vince was there as a Co-Chair. The December task force meeting was cancelled due to a lack of data. ADFG had failed to satisfy the data requests by task force members, and had not completed their run reconstruction or genetic testing. An email poll of task force members was taken, and the overwhelming majority agreed that it would not be productive to have a December meeting.
    • Subsequently at the March BOF meeting, Mr. Webster led the charge to take the easy way out by accepting a risky, lowered escapement goal.
    The Board of Fish voted UNANIMOUSLY to adopt ADFG's new EG into the management plan, as they should have. Responsibly, they chose to leave the allocative issues alone until the 2014 regularly scheduled meeting on UCI issues.
    • Public perception is that the overriding agenda of Mr. Webster is to put commercial set netters back in the water during periods of low abundance.
    It is a positive thing that Mr. Webster fully undersands the importance of yield tradeoffs and what they mean to the Alaskan communities that depend on our fishery resources. That being said, I don't beleive that public perception is anything other than that he listened to what all users and scientists had to say, and played an active role in the BOF coming to a reasonable decision to support ADFG.
    • When a new board member tried to bring up discussion points on such fishery conservation issues, Mr. Webster led the fight to deny the airing of this important topic.
    What???? A new board member did make a somewhat bold and unexpected move by submitting as an RC the EXACT PLAN THAT KRSA SUBMITTED TO THE TASK FORCE. This plan was dismissed as purely allocative and anti-setnet (Which it was) at the task force. Apparently most at the BOF meeting felt the same way.
    The resulting outcome of Mr. Webster’s actions puts at risk one of the signature king salmon fisheries in Alaska. The message from this Webster-led (UNANIMOUS!!!) decision appears to be to lower the goal in order to use up the additional 6,000 fish (6,000 fish???) as a cushion before implementing any restrictions on commercial set netters. Such an approach will almost certainly guarantee a spawning escapement that will be one of the lowest ever on record.
    The Legislature has a trust responsibility to manage the state’s fishery resources and delegates its management authority to BOF. With this authority comes responsibility for the BOF to put conservation first. Before you can manage and allocate, you must first ensure conservation; Mr. Webster has failed in this duty
    It now falls on the shoulders of the Legislature to repair this breach of public trust. We encourage all supporters of the sport and personal use fisheries to urge Legislators to vote “NO” on the reconfirmation of Mr. Webster to the Alaska Board of Fisheries.
    We don’t have much time. Please contact your legislator immediately and tell them “NO VINCE WEBSTER!” Attached is list of emails for all Alaska legislators. Email and voice your objections to the confirmation of Vince Webster.
    Thank you,
    Ricky Gease
    Executive Director
    Kenai River Sportfishing Association


    The above blog post is full of misinformation. Please voice you support for Mr. Webster, a BOF member who actually cares about Alaska's fisheries.

  11. #11

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    The Whop-

    I agree with you that it may be time for some new blood. How long have you been the chair of scada? And when is the next election of officers?

  12. #12
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    Next year is when we vote. Join SCADA, send in your dues and you can have a vote.
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  13. #13

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    Was wondering what SCADA's views are on the PU priority bill in Juneau right now. Thewhopp, you have already stated that you believe the Kenai PU fishery should include Kings, and that PU shouldn't be cut first - that was why you & SCADA pushed for Websters replacement. It is now KRSA's reason as well, although their inital letter says nothing of it.

    Do you or SCADA take the position that the PU fishery should be the primary harvester of Sockeye and Kings, as this bill would dictate?

  14. #14
    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    If this is Mr.Stoltze's bill, I don't believe it would gain traction. I also believe that it would cause friction between user groups. My board agrees on these facts. Dippers have it pretty good so why would we be too greedy. We are the new kids on the block. Bill has his own agenda and even if I agreed on princaple, my board is more reasonable than maybe I am. So no, SCADA does not support the bill in question. The BOF declared that dippers were not subsistance users. I might disagree but the board has spoken. I abide by their decision and so does my board.
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

  15. #15

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    Thank you for the clarification. Much appreciated.

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