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Thread: Purse Seine Fishery (pow island region )

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    Default Purse Seine Fishery (pow island region )

    What is the scope and range of the purse seine fishery around the POW islands. Around what date and times are they allowed to operate and to what species do they specifically target ? Is this a large scale operation and what effect does it have on the sport ( rod caught ) fishery in or around the times that they operate . Thanks from a Ireland...........

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    The seine season runs June - September in southeast Alaska. Seining is a large scale fishing operation, with most boats in town here averaging up to 1 million pounds a season per boat. Seining will have little to no effect on sport fishing, as they mainly target pink and chum salmon which are abundant, and they concentrate their fishing on inside waters, in the mouth of bays and river mouths, not the open ocean. I'm assuming your wanting to target king and coho salmon, not pinks and chums. The only effect commercial fishing will have on sport fishing, is when the Commerical King Salmon troll season opens, most of all the kings will be caught, so generally King Salmon trolling will be better before or on the first week of July. Late July and August provides great Coho trolling. Also, if you want to fish river mouths, there are still plenty of fish that make it up the rivers to provide excellent fishing. By the way, I'm in northern southeast, but generally all of this applies to the whole southeast region.

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    The seine fishery has a huge effect on sport fishing for salmon on outside of Noyes, and can really shut down some hot bites, often without hours of nets in the water. Sure they target pinks out there, but they get everything else too. We still get our fish, but it ain't on the outside of noyes. At that point we are fishing little cookie jars tucked in by inside kelp lines. Seiners are brutal on the kings/cohos.

    As it was mentioned, that the trollers can make things a bit skinny for a few days in early July. The openers have been short for kings though, and they won't be going beyond a 10 day opener for awhile.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 270ti View Post
    The seine fishery has a huge effect on sport fishing for salmon on outside of Noyes, and can really shut down some hot bites, often without hours of nets in the water. Sure they target pinks out there, but they get everything else too. We still get our fish, but it ain't on the outside of noyes. At that point we are fishing little cookie jars tucked in by inside kelp lines. Seiners are brutal on the kings/cohos.

    As it was mentioned, that the trollers can make things a bit skinny for a few days in early July. The openers have been short for kings though, and they won't be going beyond a 10 day opener for awhile.
    POW must have a much smaller density of salmon runs than up here. The seiners have almost no effect at all on our king and coho catching up here in NW southeast. When they are able to actually catch king salmon in fairly high amounts, it's during the early spring hatchery runs since they are targeting terminal areas, no other time of year. There are many, many seiners working the waters up here all summer, and we still have strong king fishing (hatchery and wild) both close to town, and all the way out to the open ocean. As far as our coho runs, seiners have hardly an impact because coho runs are so plentiful here. Sure a boat catches a handful a day, but not anymore than a charter boat does. Between the seiners, trollers, sport, and charters, there is hardly a shortage here. The king opener was only 6 days this year, due to a projected low return, but it turned out to be so productive that there was no second Augst opening. And as always, almost all the king salmon caught came out of Sitka. Go figure.

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    Really. So basically the king opener ( for commercial troll )is on or around the start of july ( pow islands ) for kings and runs for about 10 days ? Am I right in assuming that the seiners continue to fish for other species right up to September. Is this done on a daily basis or are they restricted to incremental fishing , i.e. maybe 2 days or so a week?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky_Ireland View Post
    Really. So basically the king opener ( for commercial troll )is on or around the start of july ( pow islands ) for kings and runs for about 10 days ? Am I right in assuming that the seiners continue to fish for other species right up to September. Is this done on a daily basis or are they restricted to incremental fishing , i.e. maybe 2 days or so a week?
    You can get emails of when/where/how long the openings will be on the fish & game website.

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    Member Anythingalaska's Avatar
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    I think the seiners fish 3 days a week, and they alternate with the gillnetters who also fish 3 days a week on different days. And yes they do fish until the end of august. And of course there are hundreds of trollers trolling the whole summer every day.

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    They fish open water down here. All districts have different openings too. And, every year is different as far as what the openings are. You just never know. We just dread when they go to 3 days on, 1 off. I've seen 50-60 seiners working the same 10 mile stretch, and have nets 3 deep from the beach. Things get skinny, as they are good at catching fish. We don't have gillnetters here on the W side of POW. SE AK is a big place, and rules, openings, and fisheries vary a lot.

    Nothing to worry about Micky. There's always a hot bite going on somewhere around here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Anythingalaska View Post
    POW must have a much smaller density of salmon runs than up here. The seiners have almost no effect at all on our king and coho catching up here in NW southeast. When they are able to actually catch king salmon in fairly high amounts, it's during the early spring hatchery runs since they are targeting terminal areas, no other time of year. There are many, many seiners working the waters up here all summer, and we still have strong king fishing (hatchery and wild) both close to town, and all the way out to the open ocean. As far as our coho runs, seiners have hardly an impact because coho runs are so plentiful here. Sure a boat catches a handful a day, but not anymore than a charter boat does. Between the seiners, trollers, sport, and charters, there is hardly a shortage here. The king opener was only 6 days this year, due to a projected low return, but it turned out to be so productive that there was no second Augst opening. And as always, almost all the king salmon caught came out of Sitka. Go figure.

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    I seined in Southeast for a dozen years in the 70's and 80's and we rarely ever caught any kings. They don't hold well in a purse seine. However, I can definitely see how the fishing would die off dramatically while they are working. It would not be easy working through a gauntlet like that.

    In terms of when they fish during the summer it's really dependent on two things; whether there are enough fish to justify an opening, or if there are too many fish to let them keep going. When the pink run gets hot and heavy the processors cannot keep up, and they will go to one day on and one day off; or two days on and two days off.

    Like Potbuilder said above, I keep track of the openings by monitoring the announcements on the Fish and Game website. I try and time my fishing days for when they are in town and our time in town when they are out.

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    Member Micky_Ireland's Avatar
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    that's really interesting jwl. One respondent here gestimated that some boats would lift in the region of 1 million pound of fish per boat per year ( apparently this is a lot of boats too )There must be some by catch of other species ( not intentionally taken ). My own view is that the kings are a little bit more special and should be spared ( apart for the 10 ten commercial troll season ) Theres gotta be multi millions of chum , pinks and sockeyes to be harvested instead.......

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