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Thread: NPFMC Tell the Halibut Charters to Bend Over and Take it Again!

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    Member AKBassking's Avatar
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    Default NPFMC Tell the Halibut Charters to Bend Over and Take it Again!


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    Is that what they are saying, or are they saying that the fishery can not be sustained with the current regulations?
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    NPFMC Tell the Halibut Charters to Bend Over and Take it Again
    Actually the charters caught about 125% of their limit.

    Craig Medred...

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    Not quite, but close! The best educated estimate (guess) is that area 3A may have gone over the harvest allocation for guided anglers. As we all know, charter crew harvest of halibut was not allowed! Until all harvest of halibut by guided anglers is required to be weighed when off loaded we only have a estimate (guess) of what is harvested.

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    Well Commercial fishermen get 82 percent! Maybe that should be cut back to 65% or more since their plan is to drive out the charters...

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    Until an equitable solution for the trawl bycatch dilemma is achieved, longline, recreational, and guided fisheries will suffer. The pollock fishery has a very, very powerful lobby. It's doubtful things are going to change any time soon.

    It is sad to see Alaskans taking pot shots at other Alaskans every time this subject comes up. Lots of bickering and few answers. With the number of folks on this board who are educated in fisheries management, biology, and politics, it would be interesting to see a civil, factual conversation about how to deal with trawl bycatch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    Well Commercial fishermen get 82 percent! Maybe that should be cut back to 65% or more since their plan is to drive out the charters...
    We have to remember that even with those percentages, the commercial catch is spread out from the Aleutians to Ketchikan, where the charter harvest is highly localized. The majority of the charter catch is concentrated within 60 miles of just a handful of ports around the State. Even if they are migratory somewhat, the fish caught by a longliner in Dutch Harbor is often a different fish than the one caught out of Homer. Imagine what doubling the charter harvest in the same fishing areas/holes would feel like to the average angler.

    We need to stabilize the stock and once that is done then all fishermen can enjoy the rebound.

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    AKBassking, Don't be so quick to hate. Have you ever not been able to catch a halibut because the long liners get 85% of the catch? Don't confuse the long liners with the draggers. Someone correct me if im wrong but I believe the long liners quota is figured after the draggers by catch.

    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    Well Commercial fishermen get 82 percent! Maybe that should be cut back to 65% or more since their plan is to drive out the charters...

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    I strongly agree with gb. But right now the comm fishery is in control of this situation and it is all about them and to hell with everyone else. I once, not so long ago had a comm fish tell me that their goal is to take down the charters to where they all go out of business and then people will be forced to buy their fish only from them. This attitude seems to common among the comm fish folks. I'm not a hater, the comm fish are doing that job all by themselves. Comm fish believe THEY own the resource.

    Alaska became a State due in part to the Washington/Oregon control on fish in Alaska.

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    You are a hater. Its pretty obvious in your post. So you spoke to one commercial fisherman so we all must think the same. Its people like you that will always drive a wedge because you want all the fish. You wont be happy until you get every last one. Draggers are a monster of their own and every one will get the short end of the stick until people like you get off your high horse.



    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    I strongly agree with gb. But right now the comm fishery is in control of this situation and it is all about them and to hell with everyone else. I once, not so long ago had a comm fish tell me that their goal is to take down the charters to where they all go out of business and then people will be forced to buy their fish only from them. This attitude seems to common among the comm fish folks. I'm not a hater, the comm fish are doing that job all by themselves. Comm fish believe THEY own the resource.

    Alaska became a State due in part to the Washington/Oregon control on fish in Alaska.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MGH55 View Post
    Not quite, but close! The best educated estimate (guess) is that area 3A may have gone over the harvest allocation for guided anglers.
    And that is exactly why they are getting cut - they exceeded their limit.

    3A charter harvest estimates for 2014 are 2,173,374 lbs. Limits were 1,760,000 lbs. So harvests are estimated to be 123% of allowable limits.

    Harvest estimates are based on log books, dock sampling, harvest surveys, interviews, and scientific models that are evaluated and peer reviewed to provide accuracy, precision, and 95% confidence intervals. They are certainly good enough for management purposes.

    http://www.npfmc.org/wp-content/PDFd...imates2014.pdf

    If you have something more accurate, please post it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    Well Commercial fishermen get 82 percent! Maybe that should be cut back to 65% or more since their plan is to drive out the charters...
    Actually, if you look at the numbers, the commercial fishery has taken much larger cuts. In fact the commercial fishery not only took huge cuts when the charters did not, but at the same time the charters were actually exceeding their limits.

    As AKJOB already pointed out, your 82% figure is not representative of area 2C and 3A where these charter cuts happened. The commercial fishermen do not get 82% of the catch in these areas. I think you are including all areas for commerical, most where charters don't fish. Besides, what's wrong with the commercial fishery getting 82%?...they are the commercial fishery after all.

    You must not realize that not long ago the commercial fishery had all of the charter allocation - there was no charter industry. So it is the charter industry that has come along and taken allocation from the commercial guys. Not only taken their allocation, but made them absorb gross charter overharvests.

    I think long-liners would like to co-exist with charters. But that can't happen as long as charters keep exceeding their limits, and taking their allocation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kodiak kid View Post
    Someone correct me if im wrong but I believe the long liners quota is figured after the draggers by catch.
    Yep. Only so much halibut is allowed to be harvested from the biomass, and in the end all users are combined. So when the draggers have a lot of waste, it comes off the long-liner's limit. So it's really about allocation, and the draggers by-catch is really more about waste. Those halibut are dead regardless if the draggers get them or not - if they don't, then they just shift to other users who will get them. It's a fully allocated resource.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    But right now the comm fishery is in control of this situation and it is all about them and to hell with everyone else. I once, not so long ago had a comm fish tell me that their goal is to take down the charters to where they all go out of business and then people will be forced to buy their fish only from them. This attitude seems to common among the comm fish folks. I'm not a hater, the comm fish are doing that job all by themselves. Comm fish believe THEY own the resource.
    Actually this situation is all about charters. Without them, or their allocation issues, we would not be having this discussion. Prior to charters, the commercial fishery was well-established, limited, and already under a working IFQ program. So this is about accommodating a self-generated charter industry that, without limits or regulation, imposed itself between an established sport fishery and a commercial fishery. They've always presented a cake-and-eat-it-too scenario. Charters kind of created their own mess - their own expectations. The IPHC, NMFS, NPMFC, etc. have always been commercial fishery entities - IPHC was founded by commercial fishermen, and the other agencies manage all federal commercial fisheries in Alaska - which are many and vast. Suggesting charters manage Alaska's vast halibut resource, a Federal resource for all citizens of the U.S., is nonsensical.

    I think if you put your emotion aside for a moment, and look at the facts, you'll be enlightened. Craig Medred likes to play on your type of divisive emotion. Lets not give him the satisfaction.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    I strongly agree with gb. But right now the comm fishery is in control of this situation and it is all about them and to hell with everyone else. I once, not so long ago had a comm fish tell me that their goal is to take down the charters to where they all go out of business and then people will be forced to buy their fish only from them. This attitude seems to common among the comm fish folks.
    Don't allow one person to speak on behalf of all commercial fishermen. I've met jerks in all walks of life, but I never presume that they speak for all those in their line of work.

    Quote Originally Posted by AKBassking View Post
    Comm fish believe THEY own the resource.
    I am a commercial fisherman. I don't believe that I own the resource. Not even close. Please don't presume to know what I or others like me believe.

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    I'm so sick of the more for me, I am not getting enough to fill my freezer, they are getting all my fish, crowd.
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    Something to keep in mind is that the 3A charter "quota" was cut about 33% from 2013 to 2014 with the adoption of the new Catch Sharing Plan. The 29" rule was implemented as an educated guess on how to manage the fishery to that new level in 2014. Also contributing to the overage were an increase in the average fish size (ironically, somewhat due to looking for a big one because of the 29" rule) and the addition of an estimate of release mortality (although low, still added to our overage). That is how the charter fishery in 3A wound up 16% over the new quota. Many think that it is a fair argument that we were not given an adequate starting point with the Catch Sharing Plan. 3A charters would have been well under the 2013 quota.

    I don't know any charter operators who want to put small long liners out of business. Those of us that are left are interested in finding a workable solution to the problem and a sustainable future. I know of no one in the charter industry who is not interested in giving the fish a break in times of low abundance. In recent years, charter people have put together a workable stakeholders group at the council level and a few have worked hard to provide workable solutions to problems.

    A couple of things to consider before you form a decision on this (I won't give numbers as someone will argue them).
    1. Look at the 3A and 2C commercial quotas and trawl bycatch levels from the implementation of the IFQ system through the early 2000s.
    2. Look at the sport fish harvests from the same period.
    3. Make apples to apples comparisons in terms of numbers of fish or % of TAC. See what a "gross overage" is for the sport fishery vs. others.
    3. Remember that charter overages are due to angler demand and a failure of management to hold the fleet to levels imposed upon us. Charters have had no way of knowing when to stop until it's all over.

    It seemed that there were plenty of nice fish around this year, so maybe there is hope.

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    Didn't this already happen to the long liners 20-30 years ago when the quota system was implemented? There was quite a few long liners that went out of business.



    Quote Originally Posted by offshore View Post
    Something to keep in mind is that the 3A charter "quota" was cut about 33% from 2013 to 2014 with the adoption of the new Catch Sharing Plan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kodiak kid View Post
    Didn't this already happen to the long liners 20-30 years ago when the quota system was implemented? There was quite a few long liners that went out of business.
    That was painful too. I have friends who are still bitter because they fished and didn't qualify, or were crew or partners and were left out one way or another. What was the harvest level back then and where did it go once IFQs were adopted? From what I've seen, those issued original IFQ made out well and are still doing ok as increases in price have at least in part offset reductions in harvest levels. I know a couple who lease a boat to fish their shares and are still happy with what they make. Unfortunately, the generation of fishermen who bought in (at or near the high) are now dealing with declined stocks and may have big loan payments. That sucks, no argument there. The charter fleet grew during this period too, but at 13% of the TAC, some would argue that the sport catch isn't the biggest problem facing the fishery and that destroying strong economic drivers in small coastal towns over a relatively very, very small amount of fish doesn't make a lot of sense. The growth of the charter fleet is halted. It's been halted for a few years now. I'd just like to see good businesses and a healthy fishery carry on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by offshore View Post
    That was painful too. I have friends who are still bitter because they fished and didn't qualify, or were crew or partners and were left out one way or another. What was the harvest level back then and where did it go once IFQs were adopted? From what I've seen, those issued original IFQ made out well and are still doing ok as increases in price have at least in part offset reductions in harvest levels. I know a couple who lease a boat to fish their shares and are still happy with what they make. Unfortunately, the generation of fishermen who bought in (at or near the high) are now dealing with declined stocks and may have big loan payments. That sucks, no argument there. The charter fleet grew during this period too, but at 13% of the TAC, some would argue that the sport catch isn't the biggest problem facing the fishery and that destroying strong economic drivers in small coastal towns over a relatively very, very small amount of fish doesn't make a lot of sense. The growth of the charter fleet is halted. It's been halted for a few years now. I'd just like to see good businesses and a healthy fishery carry on.
    I appreciate your level headed response to this thread. I don't hear you asking for more, blaming other groups, crying conspiracy theory, or any of the other usual "they are stealing my fish" comments. You represent your group well. Charter, commercial, and sport can all coexist, as long as people realize that halibut is not an unlimited resource. More people trying to get a piece of the pie will make smaller pieces. Gotta do something about that by catch though
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