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Thread: The INCREDIBLE shrinking Kenai king....

  1. #1
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Default The INCREDIBLE shrinking Kenai king....

    Thought it would be best to dedicate a thread of its own to this specific topic. (The other one is now almost 400 replies long!)

    Contributions made there can be copy/pasted here along with the appropriate attachments and pdf links if some of you wouldn't mind doing that copy/transfer of your excellent contributions to the other thread.

    Thanks
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

  2. #2

    Default Size trend

    Attachment 75454

    from SmithTB data

  3. #3
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    Has the Kenai River water temp been colder over the last ten years? If it has that could cause the fish to be smaller! We all know cold water can cause shrinkage

  4. #4

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    Here is ER Run reconstruction, harvest, and netting age comp from the ER Report FMS13-03. I don't know how much stock we can put in the age class reconstruction of ER or LR, but I though it may be useful. I also don't know about the netting program - I've heard it has issues, and I know that the means and methods have not been consistent throughout the years.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  5. #5

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    Here is age comp data for sport harvest of ER. Preliminary data as requested from ADFG. Includes data from creel survey applied to lower and upper river harvest numbers.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  6. #6

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    LR Commercial harvest age comp and length. Preliminary data from ADFG.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  7. #7

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    Corresponding graphs for the below posted data:
    Attached Files Attached Files

  8. #8

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    LR Harvest for all user groups and Reconstructed age class info. From LR report (FMS13-02):
    Attached Files Attached Files

  9. #9

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    Harvest age comp comparison for LR Sport & Commercial fisheries. From UCI Task Force data requests:
    Attached Files Attached Files

  10. #10

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    LR Harvest age comp below RM 9 (Commercial harvest!?) and RM 9 (Netting?) age comp. Taken from LR report (FMS13-02). Had to do a screenshot so quality may suck.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  11. #11

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    So, I had an idea with this data, but wanted to get full input from the many trolls here who are better at Excel and number crunching than me;-)

    I thought it would be cool to take the LR Sport and ESSN harvest (age comp) and combine them on a graph. I realize that I would be using total age comp for Commercial harvest and applying that data to only Kenai King harvest, but I wouldn't think that would skew anything any more than lower river creel samples being applied to upriver harvest.

    I believe that I would have to take individual harvest years, and apply LR sport and commercial total harvest numbers to each year to come up with a weighted average harvest age comp for each year (to account for different harvest levels between user groups).

    This could be put on a chart against long-term ER harvest, and ER harvest before and after the slot limit.

    I thought, in the absence of good total run age comp info or consistent netting info, that this would at least give us an idea of the differing harvest patterns between the two runs?

    I know it's far from perfect, but I'm so tired of everyone fighting over fish that I thought maybe if we all chipped in before this was done, we could come up with something that everyone can put a little faith in. At this point I don't care if it helps or hurts my specific interests - I just thought it would be an interesting experiment.

    So, let's hear it, what did I not think of? Where did I screw up? Has someone already done this?

    Nerka? Doc? Bfish? AKtally? Papi? Pacman? Fun? Marcus? Anyone, as long as it's technical and not philosophical.

    No offense Marcus - I majored in philosophy Not math - that's why I need help here.

    Doc, I hope I'm not hijacking your thread.

  12. #12

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    This is what I got so far... Title should say % Harvest by age.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails ImageUploadedByTapatalk HD1386357696.702976.jpg  

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    Quote Originally Posted by smithtb View Post
    This is what I got so far... Title should say % Harvest by age.
    smithtb - do not use the ER or LR reconstructed data in the escapement goal reports as I think they used average age composition not actual measured from the fisheries. I have to check on this but that is what I was told.

  14. #14

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    I used the harvest age comp and numbers that I posted, and I belive were results of creel surveys and commercial catch data. Not the reconstructed data. One thing I did omit is the harvest of the Drift, PU, Marine Sport, and Subsistence fisheries to the LR age comp. I was thinking that the age comp in these fisheries would most likely be similar to the ESSN harvest. I might add that into the mix?

  15. #15
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Default Just some observations pre- and post-slot....

    Under the slot, the May-June harvest of ER5-o's was essentially reduced to a value statistically indistinguishable from zero.
    Under the slot, the May-June harvest of ER4-o's was reduced by 40-50%
    Under the slot, the May-June harvest of ER3-o's increased by 2-fold
    Under the slot, the May-June harvest of ER2-o's increased by 3-fold

    What we can say about the slot limit is that it effectively shifted exploitation onto the younger age classes as planned.... BUT only thru May and June. ER fish continued to be exploited thru all of July, including the larger ER4-o and ER5-o fish that no longer had slot protections and were subsequently size-selectively harvested in July under the guise of "late run".
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

  16. #16

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    Can we breakdown the early run data to show how the slot affected the harvest by sex? What proportion of the 3's were hens? With the abundance of jacks the past several years, the only important number in my book is the number of hens that actually spawned. The total escapement numbers are very misleading with the disproportionate number of jacks that we have seen in the last several years. Jack plus jack equals jack&@$;!

  17. #17
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    Within the pool of fish protected by the 44-55" slot limit, males were disproportionally represented. Many more males than females.

    Relaxing the lower limit of the slot to 46 inches only FURTHER skews that disproportion toward males.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

  18. #18

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    I wonder how our moose population would respond to this style of management? Shoot most of the cows and a few small bulls, and spare the big bulls. It is no wonder we are in the situation we are in today. Thanks KRSA and the guides association. Maybe we can begin to repair some of the damage by lowering the early run slot limit back to where it was meant to be, 42" or less. Let's hope this board of fish session brings about some needed change.

  19. #19
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    The move by industry to liberalize the slot from 44" to 46" was supposedly expected to reduce exploitation of sub-slot hens. Proponents argued that freeing up more large bucks for harvest would indirectly reduce pressure on hens in the 40-44" range (30-36# egg wagons). It was sold with the argument that if an angler were to catch and tag a 44-46" buck, he/she would forgo harvest of a 40-44" hen.

    Turns out the argument was full of crap. And here's why. The typical angler is simply going to tag the first legal fish caught in May and June. If it happens to be a 40-44" hen.... it's effectively a dead fish. Worse yet, if it happens to be a 44-46" hen, it's also a dead fish. Fact of the matter is that 95% of all ER hens in the river are under 46".... they're virtually ALL legally bonkable. And given the propensity for the typical angler to bonk the first legal fish, that's exactly what happens to virtually every hen caught on the mighty Kenai in May and June. If it bites, it dies!
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

  20. #20

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    KRSA and the guides pushed this, so I hope they are the ones who get all the credit. They love to blame the setnetters, but I give them all the credit on this one as it is an early run issue. I do see a change in philosophy by some of the old time Kenai guides. I don't think I have ever seen as many proposals sponsered by guides ( individually, not by KRPGA ), that call for restrictions on the King fishery. Hats off to those that are seeing the light.

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