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Thread: Halibut Regs - 2015

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    Member AKArcher's Avatar
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    Exclamation Halibut Regs - 2015

    I know many of you own or know someone who owns a sea vessel and chases halibut without the assistance of a charter/guide... but there are quite a few Alaskan's who do use charters - not just for their own house but for their visiting friends/relatives.

    So for those you who are in Area 3A (South Central)willing to pay charters for the use of their boat/equipment and knowledge... you should know that you are allowed to only retain 5 halibut per year. 2 per day - 5 per year... Not sure I see the logic in that but that's what the NMFS folks decided it should be.


    This is a cut sheet of the regs...
    http://www.alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/...tsheet2015.pdf

    This will get you to more information regarding Sport Halibut Management etc..

    http://www.alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/...ibut/sport.htm
    When all else fails...ask your old-man.


    AKArcher

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    I'm curious how many residents take more than three halibut charters per season? I'd imagine very few if any and hence consider it more of a feel good move more than a measure that will substantively reduce the halibut take.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    I'm curious how many residents take more than three halibut charters per season? I'd imagine very few if any and hence consider it more of a feel good move more than a measure that will substantively reduce the halibut take.
    I absolutely do...err.. did. I had no problem paying for 5+ trips a summer and coming home with a one 15lb and one 15+ lb fish each time. Between friends inviting me to join their party to me blocking 3 day weekends and staying down in Seward etc.. When I lived in Fairbanks I averaged 10 days on the salt per year - most of them 2-3 day trips and all on charters.

    Once the charter based halibut fishery can't take any more cuts - the personal boats will see the next slap in the face. How would that fare with all of those who go out now? 1 fish per person per day / 5 per year? And to stop the skirting around the guided halibut regulations " Only kin and next of kin" can target/retain halibut on a vessel - no friends or coworkers... "

    I know that may seem a bit far fetched - At least I hope it is far fetched...
    When all else fails...ask your old-man.


    AKArcher

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    Member AKCAPT's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=AKArcher;1468868]
    So for those you who are in Area 3A (South Central)willing to pay charters for the use of their boat/equipment and knowledge... you should know that you are allowed to only retain 5 halibut per year. 2 per day - 5 per year... Not sure I see the logic in that but that's what the NMFS folks decided it should be.


    Hi there,

    Good questions.....Here is the answer - The charter fleet last year went over their new allocation that his based on the very low level of abundance of halibut, by about 20%....Because of this, for 2015, reductions had to be taken. The industry has by and large fought to keep two fish, for a variety of reasons I do not have the time or will to talk about now. So to keep two fish....we need to come up with reductions and closing halibut charters on Thursdays will save us almost 12%. The next viable option was the annual limit of 5 fish.
    The simple fact is that very few fishermen fish on charters more than two days, less still more than 3 trips. Those few that fish more than that can either choose to not keep their second fish ( the one under 29") and fish five charters. If it was limited to six fish, the savings would not have been sufficient to meet our catch level obligations. Really if you keep fish halibut between 20 - 80- pounds - a 40 pound average that would provide you 100+ pounds of fillets for one person.
    Private boaters are safe for reductions, but really guys, halibut abundance is at a historical low point. Please enjoy catching them, catch what you need to but you simply do not need to kill a limit of halibut every time you go out on a private boat or even a charter. It is time to think about conservation, even if the regulations do not force you do to do so. I know its time for people to chime in aboutTrawler by catch....Believe me final action is coming in June on trawler halibut by catch and reductions are coming and it is going to retroactive to the beginning of the year of implementation.
    The bottom line is everyone is being tasked with giving the halibut a break, while still enjoying a good day of fishing.

    This will be the last time I am going to be able to answer questions like this, in this way. I have been nominated to serve on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council and if appointed, making off the cuff comments may no not be okay anymore. I am going to ask the moderator if we can get a section where you can pose questions to the NOAA Fisheries Recreational Fishing Coordinator. She is very knowledgable and I will keep on eye on your comments and will try to make sure you get good information. I want to be a good representative for you all and sometimes you can get yourself into all
    kinds of trouble on the internet by making comments.
    If you think it is a good idea for someone like to to be elevated to a policy making position for fishermen, don't hesitate to send an email to let fish and game Commissioner Cotten and Governor Walker that they made a good decision promoting an actual fisherman to a position like this. People usually save those emails for complaints and saying thanks goes a long way to encourage them to do more for recreational fishermen in the future.

    I look forward to serving your interests as best I can in the future

    - Andy Mezirow

    I will continue to provide fishing reports from Seward in the summer for you guys too.

  5. #5
    Member hoose35's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKArcher View Post
    I absolutely do...err.. did. I had no problem paying for 5+ trips a summer and coming home with a one 15lb and one 15+ lb fish each time. Between friends inviting me to join their party to me blocking 3 day weekends and staying down in Seward etc.. When I lived in Fairbanks I averaged 10 days on the salt per year - most of them 2-3 day trips and all on charters.

    Once the charter based halibut fishery can't take any more cuts - the personal boats will see the next slap in the face. How would that fare with all of those who go out now? 1 fish per person per day / 5 per year? And to stop the skirting around the guided halibut regulations " Only kin and next of kin" can target/retain halibut on a vessel - no friends or coworkers... "

    I know that may seem a bit far fetched - At least I hope it is far fetched...
    I absolutely have no problem taking 5 a year, I already practice this. Last year I put maybe 8 halibut in the freezer, between me, my wife, and 3 kids. No, I'm not starving, and yes, we love to eat it.
    Responsible Conservation > Political Allocation

  6. #6

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    I think five a year is good per person. I mean, for a family of four, that's 20 halibut. With all the other delicious saltwater fish out there, (tons of salmon and rockfish) it seems like plenty. (now I'm getting hungry thinking about it)
    Hike faster. I hear banjo music.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wildog View Post
    I think five a year is good per person. I mean, for a family of four, that's 20 halibut. With all the other delicious saltwater fish out there, (tons of salmon and rockfish) it seems like plenty. (now I'm getting hungry thinking about it)
    I'm glad there has been an annual limit imposed. I often wonder what people do with their hundreds of pounds of fish. I think they should have gone one step further and made it 5 annually for everybody. I eat more fish than anyone I know i think and five average sized plus my wife's five is more than we have ever kept for a year. We mix it with winter kings and don't even need to fish reds or silvers anymore.

    I only wish they would make the winter king fishery here limited for the winter months. It is a booming fishery this year but I know of people going out every day taking 4-5 person limits for the same people multiple times because we can. I have been out once in Jan. and once in Feb and both my wife and I limited on above average kings. Same thing wiht my two friends. Those 8 fish are enough for half of a year of eating almost nothing but kings nonstop. I love to fish but there is no reason to stock hundreds of pounds of fish in a freezer or even jars when it is so easy to get them fresh.

    I especially think the charter captains should be limited to not be able to take a limit of fish when they fish clients almost every day. I know some who do this by their pictures. Wish people were more responsible to a great fishery so that it would last longer but it seems like it's more important to be able to post pics on facebook and tally up scores of personally caught fish. There is no way these fish are going to a good use. I aim to write F&G about this. Hopefully they will intervene before its too late.

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    my question is when the BIO mass goes up will the limit go back up for every one or just the long liners , I have my Idea , & I don't think so
    an it wont be long till the all the people get the same regs. as 5 per year SID

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    Quote Originally Posted by baitfish22 View Post
    I'm glad there has been an annual limit imposed. I often wonder what people do with their hundreds of pounds of fish. I think they should have gone one step further and made it 5 annually for everybody. I eat more fish than anyone I know i think and five average sized plus my wife's five is more than we have ever kept for a year. We mix it with winter kings and don't even need to fish reds or silvers anymore.

    I only wish they would make the winter king fishery here limited for the winter months. It is a booming fishery this year but I know of people going out every day taking 4-5 person limits for the same people multiple times because we can. I have been out once in Jan. and once in Feb and both my wife and I limited on above average kings. Same thing wiht my two friends. Those 8 fish are enough for half of a year of eating almost nothing but kings nonstop. I love to fish but there is no reason to stock hundreds of pounds of fish in a freezer or even jars when it is so easy to get them fresh.

    I especially think the charter captains should be limited to not be able to take a limit of fish when they fish clients almost every day. I know some who do this by their pictures. Wish people were more responsible to a great fishery so that it would last longer but it seems like it's more important to be able to post pics on facebook and tally up scores of personally caught fish. There is no way these fish are going to a good use. I aim to write F&G about this. Hopefully they will intervene before its too late.
    Come down here to Kodiak around Christmas time, stand at the FEDEX counter and you'll see where all those gill netted reds/silvers and the SHARK card halibut go.....Everyone standing there with 4-8 50lb boxes heading south....
    Life's to short for an ugly boat

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    the fish belongs to every one not just the long liners or am I wrong, if I want to send fish instead of money as gifts I should be able to ,
    I don't like to send money gifts I should be able to send gifts I caught my self in stead of buying the gifts , be sides FEDEX or UPS needs the money it cost to ship the boxes south , an that will help more people all over the lower 48 not just the local long liners to make the money
    My 2 CTS SID

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    I think we all use different amounts of fish. What may seem excessive to a single guy is normal for a family of 6+.
    My wife and stepson both have subsistence cards. We rarely even harvest one daily limit of fish on their cards and when we do it is fish spilt between my 2 brothers inlaw who also have cards and fish with us. Some also goes to my mother in law and my parents all of whom are Alaskan residents.
    I think limiting charters this way mostly limits non residents and I am totally fine with limiting what non residents take home from Alaska.
    I know residents send out fish but it is expensive to do and I have only done it once or twice in 18+ years of living here.
    I think limiting non residents annual take of Halibut however it might work is a good thing.
    If possible limit non residents before we limit residents harvest. Might not be possible but it IMHO be a good start.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sid View Post
    the fish belongs to every one not just the long liners or am I wrong, if I want to send fish instead of money as gifts I should be able to ,
    I don't like to send money gifts I should be able to send gifts I caught my self in stead of buying the gifts , be sides FEDEX or UPS needs the money it cost to ship the boxes south , an that will help more people all over the lower 48 not just the local long liners to make the money
    My 2 CTS SID
    This new law in no way limits you shipping fish out as gifts. If you fish on private boats this really doesn't effect you at all.
    I could argue that longliners bring in money to our local economies as most of this fish is processed here and most of their supplies and fuel are bought here in Alaska. Probably more money than UPS or FEDEX makes shipping out the fish and more of that money stays local.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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    AKCapt,

    Congratulations on the nomination. I wish you the best of luck in the process, and while your addition would be beneficial for the process, we will miss your educated and well-informed posts, as well as your perspective on these issues. Best of luck,

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    People seem to have no issue with the gill netters and longliners who send all their catch down to the lower 48,
    yet when people come from down south and support the peninsulas biggest industry (tourism) by dropping thousands at local motels, inns, resorts, charter services, car rentals, local airlines, restaurants, hardware stores, gas stations, shops etc, and want to bring home a few extra fish to share with their friends and family everyone looses their minds. The fish are worth way more to the state for tourism than they ever will be to the longliners.
    If a person comes up and drops 3,000$ on a fishing trip to the peninsula and wants to bring home 100lbs of fish, that figures to be 30$ spent per pound of fish brought home.
    In comparison the longliners get something in the ball park of just over 5$ per pound. Not to mention the white elephant in the room (by catch) that is being discarded by the ton.
    I think its pretty clear who should be getting their #s cut.

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    Wow. I knew this was going to be a hot thread. I think the charter rationalization and the charter annual limit are right in step with the restrictions and rationalization used on the longliners in the same area.

    If the argument is about what fishery drives the most $ into Alaska it is a tough one.

    The issue of the Cook Inlet commercial industries vs the king salmon, and salmon fishing in the rivers and Inlet is a great example.

    We all want to keep doing "our" thing. Commercial fishing is already limited by entrants, but increased pressure by "sports" fishing and guiding must be addressed vs the $ and the good of the resource. Period.

    My 2 cents all. Good fishing to everybody on all fronts.




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    Quote Originally Posted by Abel View Post
    Come down here to Kodiak around Christmas time, stand at the FEDEX counter and you'll see where all those gill netted reds/silvers and the SHARK card halibut go.....Everyone standing there with 4-8 50lb boxes heading south....
    Are you telling me people with subsistence cards are sending fish out of state or for that matter Alaskan residents? I call BS on that one

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    Quote Originally Posted by kasilofchrisn View Post
    This new law in no way limits you shipping fish out as gifts. If you fish on private boats this really doesn't effect you at all.
    I could argue that longliners bring in money to our local economies as most of this fish is processed here and most of their supplies and fuel are bought here in Alaska. Probably more money than UPS or FEDEX makes shipping out the fish and more of that money stays local.
    A pound of sport caught halibut brings far more money per pound to AK than long liners. Just sayin

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    Quote Originally Posted by kgpcr View Post
    Are you telling me people with subsistence cards are sending fish out of state or for that matter Alaskan residents? I call BS on that one
    I hope you are kidding on this one... But in the event you're not I happen to work at the airport in Anchorage. I see MANY locals leaving with multiple boxes of fish. Not 3-4 boxes but 8-15 boxes as checked baggage - two per family member and only carry-ons for clothing. I'm not going in to details as to how I know they are Alaskan residents but yes it does happen.

    Typically tourists bring 2-4 boxes home... more than that they ship it via FedEx. Locals will typically take one box with them to share with family (usually during the holidays). So when I see 8 or more fish boxes getting checked in - its obvious that fish wasn't harvested for resident Alaskan consumption.
    When all else fails...ask your old-man.


    AKArcher

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    [quote=akcapt;1468923]
    Quote Originally Posted by akarcher View Post
    so for those you who are in area 3a (south central)willing to pay charters for the use of their boat/equipment and knowledge... You should know that you are allowed to only retain 5 halibut per year. 2 per day - 5 per year... Not sure i see the logic in that but that's what the nmfs folks decided it should be.


    Hi there,

    good questions.....here is the answer - the charter fleet last year went over their new allocation that his based on the very low level of abundance of halibut, by about 20%....because of this, for 2015, reductions had to be taken. The industry has by and large fought to keep two fish, for a variety of reasons i do not have the time or will to talk about now. So to keep two fish....we need to come up with reductions and closing halibut charters on thursdays will save us almost 12%. The next viable option was the annual limit of 5 fish.
    The simple fact is that very few fishermen fish on charters more than two days, less still more than 3 trips. Those few that fish more than that can either choose to not keep their second fish ( the one under 29") and fish five charters. If it was limited to six fish, the savings would not have been sufficient to meet our catch level obligations. Really if you keep fish halibut between 20 - 80- pounds - a 40 pound average that would provide you 100+ pounds of fillets for one person.
    Private boaters are safe for reductions, but really guys, halibut abundance is at a historical low point. Please enjoy catching them, catch what you need to but you simply do not need to kill a limit of halibut every time you go out on a private boat or even a charter. It is time to think about conservation, even if the regulations do not force you do to do so. I know its time for people to chime in abouttrawler by catch....believe me final action is coming in june on trawler halibut by catch and reductions are coming and it is going to retroactive to the beginning of the year of implementation.
    The bottom line is everyone is being tasked with giving the halibut a break, while still enjoying a good day of fishing.

    This will be the last time i am going to be able to answer questions like this, in this way. I have been nominated to serve on the north pacific fishery management council and if appointed, making off the cuff comments may no not be okay anymore. I am going to ask the moderator if we can get a section where you can pose questions to the noaa fisheries recreational fishing coordinator. She is very knowledgable and i will keep on eye on your comments and will try to make sure you get good information. I want to be a good representative for you all and sometimes you can get yourself into all
    kinds of trouble on the internet by making comments.
    If you think it is a good idea for someone like to to be elevated to a policy making position for fishermen, don't hesitate to send an email to let fish and game commissioner cotten and governor walker that they made a good decision promoting an actual fisherman to a position like this. People usually save those emails for complaints and saying thanks goes a long way to encourage them to do more for recreational fishermen in the future.

    I look forward to serving your interests as best i can in the future

    - andy mezirow

    i will continue to provide fishing reports from seward in the summer for you guys too.
    Thank you for your response Andy,

    I would also like to thank you for your continued effort to represent the Sport Fisherman via Charter Boat/Captain... I/we all knew that there would be continued cuts made to the harvest of halibut in 3A - but knowing its coming doesn't make it feel any worse. Having some back story as to why is always nice. Not being able to attend all of the meetings, I must rely on folks like you to convey some of the information as to why the decisions were made.

    I do love to fish - and will probably give up the sub 29" fish every trip so I can spend more time on the water... but as I do this I am anxious to see how much of a cut the trawl fleet will take on their halibut by-catch numbers - and how that will be enforced.

    Good luck this summer...
    When all else fails...ask your old-man.


    AKArcher

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoose35 View Post
    I absolutely have no problem taking 5 a year, I already practice this. Last year I put maybe 8 halibut in the freezer, between me, my wife, and 3 kids. No, I'm not starving, and yes, we love to eat it.
    Five 40lb halibut would be enough for most families - including mine. As it stands now - one of the daily limit is going to weigh 15lbs (7lbs of meat) and the second is a crap shoot - Could be 20lbs could be 60 could be 200. So of the five per year, two would yield 14 lbs of meat and the other 3...who knows.

    Now as I have just posted a few minutes ago - I will more than likely forgo the sub 29" fish and go on five trips to keep bigger fish for the freezer. Which brings me to a new question... Didn't the BIO's and NMFS want us to NOT target the larger fish? This is a question in general - not aimed towards you hoose35
    When all else fails...ask your old-man.


    AKArcher

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