Kenai King Sonar Transition
Here is a link to the department's supporting info for transition to the upper river sonar. Have not read it yet.
So the midpoint of the Late Run should cross the sonar on approximately July 28th. Thats only 3 days before the end of the inriver fishery.
As of July 21st, historically (2 years) only 34% of the run has crossed the counters. So many of the management decisions will be made when barely 1/4 of the late run has been enumerated.
That makes me nervous.
OTOH, it may well mean that management decision will be DELAYED a few days til they get a better handle on in-river abundance.
The sword can be made to cut either way.
"Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone."
The KeenEye MD
Not necessarily a good thing for the fish. IMO it means fishery decisions will be made on less available data. Starting to wonder if some sort of fixed exploitation/harvest cap model would provide more opportunity for all and more protection for these fish. I dunno.
Originally Posted by fishNphysician
Getting weary of getting hacked by that darned sword.
This should prove to be an interesting year for fishery managers. I don't see how they can allow much harvest opportunity in any fishery involving LR enumerations. They estimate the harvest below the new sonar site to be only around 40-45% but my personal experience would put it much higher than that even before you consider that this year there will be no harvest allowed above Slikok Cr.. I can imagine a scenario this year where the LR sport-fish season will be no bait throughout and only C&R for the majority of the season if not all season. Set net opportunity will be minimal and no king harvest allowed in the PU fishery. To bad too with the projected return of around 22,000 everybody should have some harvest opportunity but the unknowns in the new sonar program for a few years will probably have to err on the side of conservation. At least that's good for the fish and might help us edge a little forward on the low abundance recovery.
I also see the fishery above Slikok Cr. closed for quite some time which should push the in-river harvest below the sonar up into the 60-70% category. How can managers allow much harvest to go on until later in the season after they get some confidence in their escapement values? So then they finally open it to harvest late in the season and we have maximum effort in the King fishery in the lower river combined with all the boats running back and forth to access the PU fishery and jamming up the launches. What a mess that will be. FUBAR beyond all proportions greater than anyone ever imagined. To restore order on this river we are going to have to figure out some regulatory process that keeps the PU fishery in the PU area, for the sake of the sport fishery, the fish and the lower river's habitat structure.
Most of the concerns seem to based on a season-ending date for Chinook on the Kenai Rv as July 31. That date was not handed to ADF&G from the heavens, on stone tablets. They can always change it.
If ADF&G cannot get a reliable run-size estimate until later in July, and if the numbers suggest a harvestable surplus is available, then open the season in late July, running into August. I realize that it's not ideal for planning purposes (for the guide industry). Clearly nobody wants to book a Chinook salmon fishing trip for August, since it might not open, but this is clearly a better way to manage the fishery. Just wait until you are reasonably sure there will be enough spawners, then open the season. If that does not occur until August, then open the season in August.
WHAT????? How could we possibly do that and maintain our "prescriptive, paired restrictions" with the completely separate commercial Sockeye fishery?
Originally Posted by Cohoangler
Get your thinking back inside the box Coho!
My apologies...... Won't happen again.