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Thread: Rewriting F & G's mission statement

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    Default Rewriting F & G's mission statement

    Current mission statement:

    To protect, maintain, and improve the fish, game, and aquatic plant resources of the state, and manage their use and development in the best interest of the economy and the well-being of the people of the state, consistent with the sustained yield principle.

    We all have issues with how F & G manages Alaska's fish. Since mission statements guide decision making, how would you rewrite F & G's mission statement to better reflect how you think the State should manage fish?

    I don't have a suggestion yet. I have to put some more thought into it.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Default turn it around

    Words on paper, not worth much more than that. The statutes and regs provide the "real" guidance. If I was going to list them in order of importance, I'd reverse the order: sustained yield, best interest of residents, then economy...
    "Fishing relaxes me. It's like yoga, except I still get to kill something." --Ron Swanson

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    I might propose something like this:

    To protect, maintain, and improve fish and wildlife populations and habitat of the state, and manage their use and development in the best long-term interest and well-being of the people of the state, consistent with the sustained yield principle.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
    I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. ~Gerry Spence
    The last thing Alaska needs is another bigot. ~member Catch It
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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    I might propose something like this:

    To protect, maintain, and improve fish and wildlife populations and habitat of the state, and manage their use and development in the best long-term interest and well-being of the people of the state, consistent with the sustained yield principle.
    So, no mention of economics. Pretty sure every costal community in Alaska would have something to say about that.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smithtb View Post
    So, no mention of economics. Pretty sure every costal community in Alaska would have something to say about that.
    Well, lets just say I agree with MRFISH in that perhaps the priorities are a bit backwards. Economy should not be the primary focus of F&G biologists, nor the policies administered upon the results of biologist's work. Take care of the habitat and the species dependent upon that habitat, and the economy will take care of itself.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
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    Fair enough, although economics is an important aspect of fisheries. That seems to be ignored by many these days.

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    Well, lets just say I agree with MRFISH in that perhaps the priorities are a bit backwards. Economy should not be the primary focus of F&G biologists, nor the policies administered upon the results of biologist's work. Take care of the habitat and the species dependent upon that habitat, and the economy will take care of itself.
    +1. Completely agree.

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    If there is surplus there must be ecomonics. I'd go with MRFISH and his post.

    totally agree with EITT that it can't be the primary concern of biologists. That is what the BOF, NPFMC do, but it's still important. Not as important as the habitat and the fish, but important.

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    If there were a problem with the mission statement, maybe it would be that the fish side is so totally different than the game side. We don't commercially harvest game. Not in the same way we commercially harvest fish for market. Yes, there is economics related to the game side, like nonresident license and tag fees that help fund DWC. And ADFG and BOG definitely consider that when making management decisions. But not to the same extent at all as the fish side with salmon. Which is further proven out with the policy changes on the fish side to manage for MSY for some species. We don't do that on the game side.

    Managing with too much emphasis on economics is always troubling. But it can't be avoided entirely. I don't really have a problem with ADFG's mission statement. I just wish the regulators (boards) at times didn't put so much emphasis on economics in setting policy.

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    Default best interests..

    How do we fit in the best interests of the United States - or do we just ignore the fact that we just one of 50 states? Everyone should remember that government money is one of the two major driving economic forces in this state. (I shouldn't have to remind anyone that we would truly be in a world of hurt without the government's money - mainly from the other 49 states - that is spent here.)

    Quote Originally Posted by MRFISH View Post
    Words on paper, not worth much more than that. The statutes and regs provide the "real" guidance. If I was going to list them in order of importance, I'd reverse the order: sustained yield, best interest of residents, then economy...
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    WE DON"T, and you were right, you shouldn't have!
    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    How do we fit in the best interests of the United States - or do we just ignore the fact that we just one of 50 states? Everyone should remember that government money is one of the two major driving economic forces in this state. (I shouldn't have to remind anyone that we would truly be in a world of hurt without the government's money - mainly from the other 49 states - that is spent here.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    How do we fit in the best interests of the United States - or do we just ignore the fact that we just one of 50 states? Everyone should remember that government money is one of the two major driving economic forces in this state. (I shouldn't have to remind anyone that we would truly be in a world of hurt without the government's money - mainly from the other 49 states - that is spent here.)
    tv, I didn't delete anything from the current mission statement. I just suggested a re-ordering (if it was going to be in order of importance and my opinion was worth two ****s). For fisheries under State authority we can (and should) manage for Alaska residents. That doesn't mean non-residents are cut out.

    AK Constitution Article 8, Section 2,
    "The legislature shall provide for the utilization, development, and conservation of all natural resources belonging to the State, including land and waters, for the maximum benefit of its people" (my emphasis)
    "Fishing relaxes me. It's like yoga, except I still get to kill something." --Ron Swanson

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    If they would follow the current mission statement there would be no need for a rewrite. Considering the current state of chinook across the state, and specifically chinook in the Kenai and Mat-Su Valley, and sockeye and coho in the Susitna and knik drainages, it is very hard to look at the mission statement as written and believe it matters a hill of beans to the department. The emergency measures for chinook in the matsu valley include elimination of retention everywhere but Deshka and Little Su in the Susitna and Knik drainages, and very little retention in the Yentna. The emergency action in the commercial fishery dependent upon the same stocks, however, is to hold 3 6 hour openers, with historic potential of 2500 chinook. So lets consider that. Of the 3 rivers that made escapement minimums, Deshka did the best, after conservation measures were taken to reduce harvest. Remove that from the equation, and the remaining two streams that made threshold had well under 1000 fish over minimum; if I recall right it was closer to 500. This for the entire Susitna/Yentna drainage. And this year's run is forecast to be smaller. 14 of 17 streams did not meet the minimum needed for sustainability. Deshka begins the year with sport restrictions. Little Su begins with sport restrictions. The rest of the valley has ZERO retention allowed. Yet the commercial fishery, comprised of a handful of participants, will be open to fish what prior to 2005 was their regular season. Allowed to catch up to 2500 salmon; when there were only 3 streams that even barely eked over the threshold. Where are the fish surplus to spawning needs that they will be catching? "To protect, maintain, and improve the fish..."
    I just don't see it. Oh, and there is supposed to be a sport fish priority for kings in the Susitna drainage. Lets see; sport fishing, closed completely or restricted heavily, with no killing allowed nearly drainage wide. Commercial; fish less, but with potential to kill 2500 fish. Where is the priority?

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    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post
    If they would follow the current mission statement there would be no need for a rewrite. Considering the current state of chinook across the state, and specifically chinook in the Kenai and Mat-Su Valley, and sockeye and coho in the Susitna and knik drainages, it is very hard to look at the mission statement as written and believe it matters a hill of beans to the department. The emergency measures for chinook in the matsu valley include elimination of retention everywhere but Deshka and Little Su in the Susitna and Knik drainages, and very little retention in the Yentna. The emergency action in the commercial fishery dependent upon the same stocks, however, is to hold 3 6 hour openers, with historic potential of 2500 chinook. So lets consider that. Of the 3 rivers that made escapement minimums, Deshka did the best, after conservation measures were taken to reduce harvest. Remove that from the equation, and the remaining two streams that made threshold had well under 1000 fish over minimum; if I recall right it was closer to 500. This for the entire Susitna/Yentna drainage. And this year's run is forecast to be smaller. 14 of 17 streams did not meet the minimum needed for sustainability. Deshka begins the year with sport restrictions. Little Su begins with sport restrictions. The rest of the valley has ZERO retention allowed. Yet the commercial fishery, comprised of a handful of participants, will be open to fish what prior to 2005 was their regular season. Allowed to catch up to 2500 salmon; when there were only 3 streams that even barely eked over the threshold. Where are the fish surplus to spawning needs that they will be catching? "To protect, maintain, and improve the fish..."
    I just don't see it. Oh, and there is supposed to be a sport fish priority for kings in the Susitna drainage. Lets see; sport fishing, closed completely or restricted heavily, with no killing allowed nearly drainage wide. Commercial; fish less, but with potential to kill 2500 fish. Where is the priority?
    Willphish, we already talked about this.....

    From ADFG 2012 season summary page 4:

    "Prior to the 2012 fishing season, the department determined that additional restrictions were necessary to further reduce Chinook salmon commercial harvest. By EO, all fishing periods during the 2012 Northern District Chinook salmon fishery were reduced in duration from 12 hours to 6 hours per period. The estimated Chinook salmon harvest in the Northern District directed fishery was approximately 1,037 fish, or about 57% less than the previous 10-year average annual harvest of 2,389 fish."

    Sooo, they got their hours cut by half, and their harvest dropped 57%, but you believe the 'historic potential' of their harvest with 6 hour openers is 2,500 fish, 111 fish more than their 10-year average of 2,389 Kings with primarily 12 hour openers.

    How the hell is that possible?

    Every day you spend blaming the commies for the problems in the Northern District is another day spent not addressing the very real inriver issues you have up there.

    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/ho.../237160620.pdf

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    If sportfish is open, C&R or C&k, then it is open. It might not be fair (as I've said in another thread) on how those two mesh. However both are sportfish. If other fisheries are closed, and heavily constricted on a temporal/spacial way, and sportfish is not. Then obviously the mandated priority is/has/will occur. Also willfish the open sportfish will obviously have a mortality rate. Troubling thing is it will be unknown, and so will other spawning exhaustion issues.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smithtb View Post
    Willphish, we already talked about this.....

    From ADFG 2012 season summary page 4:

    "Prior to the 2012 fishing season, the department determined that additional restrictions were necessary to further reduce Chinook salmon commercial harvest. By EO, all fishing periods during the 2012 Northern District Chinook salmon fishery were reduced in duration from 12 hours to 6 hours per period. The estimated Chinook salmon harvest in the Northern District directed fishery was approximately 1,037 fish, or about 57% less than the previous 10-year average annual harvest of 2,389 fish."

    Sooo, they got their hours cut by half, and their harvest dropped 57%, but you believe the 'historic potential' of their harvest with 6 hour openers is 2,500 fish, 111 fish more than their 10-year average of 2,389 Kings with primarily 12 hour openers.

    How the hell is that possible?

    Every day you spend blaming the commies for the problems in the Northern District is another day spent not addressing the very real inriver issues you have up there.

    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/ho.../237160620.pdf
    Try averaging the harvest from years '95-2004. These years were fished largely with 3 6 hour openers, as is being proposed now as "conservative" measures in the commercial fishery. Here is the link. http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/fi...al/ucihhar.pdf

    In '95, 4,130 fish were caught. '98, 2547 kings. '99, 2812. '00, 2307. I think I am spot on when I claim that the currently proposed hours and season length has the potential to catch 2500 fish. I'm not reading from a PR document the department published. I am looking at the numbers myself and drawing a conclusion from those. Conclusion: Since historically, the fishery has caught more than 2500 fish several times, under similar restrictions, the fishery has the potential this year to catch 2500 fish. Is it that big a stretch?

    Therefore, knowing our king fishery is in the ditch right now, and fish and game has severely restricted sportfishing to allow little or no sport mortality drainage wide, I am utterly flabbergasted that they consider that "restriction" on the commercial side as satisfactory. I'm not playing blame games, saying one side is killing all of them so has to be stopped. ALL sources of mortality have to be considered, and dealt with with a very heavy hand until numbers come up.

    This is the head in the sand mentality of the Department of Commercial fish. "We cannot pinpoint the source of these salmon, as genetic studies are incomplete and identification during the run is not attainable yet, so we cannot quantify the impact that commercial mortality on these stocks has to the escapements of their streams of origin. We know there is some impact, as obviously salmon caught commercially had to come from and be going to somewhere, but lacking a cheap means to quantify this impact, we can continue to harvest these stocks at a high level, with no perceivable impact to their natal streams." Quotes are mine.

    Smith, what inriver issues to king production does the valley have? And in what ways are we NOT addressing those issues?

    The biggest inriver issues that I see have nothing to do with man, but are acts of nature. What man can do to address those issues is adjust escapement goals to compensate for low returns, by allowing larger returns for a few years after the event occurs. Not to exceed the upper end of goals, but to get close to it, instead of managing to barely creep over the threshold. Man has reduced the amount of fishing allowed inriver to nearly nothing, but has done much less to reduce take in salt water.

    You can say I'm blaming the commercial fishery for the problem with king salmon. Doesn't make it true. What I am saying is that a fishery that takes a big chunk of salmon from the pie, before any inriver indices to abundance are present, needs to be managed very conservatively in light of recent and projected chinook runs. And it is not. I dispute F&G's claim to the contrary, and have provided the argument, with numbers, to back that argument.

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    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post
    Try averaging the harvest from years '95-2004. These years were fished largely with 3 6 hour openers, as is being proposed now as "conservative" measures in the commercial fishery. Here is the link. http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/fi...al/ucihhar.pdf

    In '95, 4,130 fish were caught. '98, 2547 kings. '99, 2812. '00, 2307. I think I am spot on when I claim that the currently proposed hours and season length has the potential to catch 2500 fish. I'm not reading from a PR document the department published. I am looking at the numbers myself and drawing a conclusion from those. Conclusion: Since historically, the fishery has caught more than 2500 fish several times, under similar restrictions, the fishery has the potential this year to catch 2500 fish. Is it that big a stretch?
    Yes, it is a BIG stretch to take harvest totals from years of high abundance and suggest that this fishery will harvest at that level on a year of predicted low return. As already stated, harvest in 2012 was 1,037 kings, or 57% of the average of 2,389 (Not 2,500). Total harvest in a setnet fishery is very much linked to abundance, not just opportunity.

    Also from the 2012 season summary.

    "In all of UCI, approximately 2,358 Chinook salmon were harvested in 2012, which was about 85% less than the 19662011 average annual harvest of 15,700 fish"

    All of the gillnets in the ENTIRE INLET caught less that what you believe the ND will potentially catch next year...

    It would by much more appropriate to figure that harvest potential will be similar to the actual harvest of a similar year - last year - around 1,000 fish, not 2,500. (Have not seen ND forcasts, but assuming they're similar to last year like the rest of UCI)

    Hopefully you can admit that you stretched it a little (lot), and we can get back to the facts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    How do we fit in the best interests of the United States - or do we just ignore the fact that we just one of 50 states? Everyone should remember that government money is one of the two major driving economic forces in this state.......
    Indeed. Government spending is one of Alaska's two main income sectors. Oil is the other. Fishing is included in the third leg of the stool along with ALL other industries COMBINED (including mining, tourism, service, etc).

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    Suppose, for the sake of argument, setnet will catch 1000 fish. When there are only 3 streams of 17 that even met the bare minimum escapement, where will those 1000 fish come from? Are you willing to sacrifice the future sustainability of nearly every monitored stream in the Susitna/Yentna drainage, so a handful of fishermen will be able to continue business as usual? Sure sounds like it!

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