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Thread: Upper Cook Inlet BOF Deadline April 1

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    Default Upper Cook Inlet BOF Deadline April 1

    The supposed deadline for proposals is April 1. The deadline may or may not apply to everyone.

    Any proposals? More specifically, any proposals to enhance and redeem the Early Run?

  2. #2

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    How about starting every season with no bait, catch and release only. Of course, if runs size is forecast to not meet minimum, then the run should be closed period. I would also like to see a 42" cap when retention is allowed. No retention of fish over 42" period- through both runs . We have been systematically removing the large fish from the gene pool via our sport fishery and this might be a means of correcting our past mistakes. I would love to see this for both runs. One fish under 42" before July 1, one fish under 42" in July.

  3. #3

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    I've been thinking a lot about the Kasilof PU fishery. There are few rules down there, and DNR seems hellbent on increasing access without management plans. One thing I would like to see established are clear rules on motorized boat use in this fishery. There are currently none to my knowledge - basically whatever you have the stones to launch. I believe someone even launched a pickup last year... Honestly, I'd like to see that PU fishery go no motors, but my submitting a proposal to that effect might come with some... undesirable blowback. I am interested if anyone else has thought about this. I would think there are some inriver users concerned about this as well. The Ditch has been a pretty quiet river for a long time, and to many that is the appeal. Powerboat use has increased, and will do so rapidly if Parks and DNR somehow fund their planned lower river projects. Would be nice to see some proactive rules before it turns into a show like the Kenai.

    I'm not looking to restrict access simply for the sake of doing so, but I think it's OK to look at the Kenai zoo and not like what I see. No blame to anyone participating, but I don't want that for the Kasilof, and for some reason it seems like that is what DNR is encouraging. Hoping to work together with other user groups to create some structure on the Kasilof, while still providing access for as many as is sustainable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by akcarv View Post
    How about starting every season with no bait, catch and release only. Of course, if runs size is forecast to not meet minimum, then the run should be closed period. I would also like to see a 42" cap when retention is allowed. No retention of fish over 42" period- through both runs . We have been systematically removing the large fish from the gene pool via our sport fishery and this might be a means of correcting our past mistakes. I would love to see this for both runs. One fish under 42" before July 1, one fish under 42" in July.
    You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to akcarv again.
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  5. #5

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    Another proposal idea that might give the early run a bit more relief, would be to shift the late run season a week later and make up for lost days by fishing into August. Closing the king fishery the first week of July would allow more late returning ,early run ,main stem spawners ,more time to travel into spawning closure areas, or at least above the open fishing area. Less early run fish will be counted as late run harvest, which has always been a problem. The July 1 bait opener has traditionally hammered those big pink, late returning early run fish. All of the conservation efforts that we have been using in May and June are wasted when we go catch and keep with bait July 1. Starting the late run fishing one week later with no bait would really give the early run some relief.

  6. #6

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    I like the idea of adjusting season dates, and the idea of a lower river pass-through fishery better than mandatory C&R and season long slots. Not opposed to the latter, but just think that hitting the stronger portion of the run further from the spawning beds is a good idea. Perhaps if the fish are given a little more sanctuary more big ones will escape to spawn while still keeping alive the prospect of hanging a hawg on the mantle.

  7. #7

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    I forgot to add that the August king fishing would be a lower River, pass through fishery with no king fishing above the new king counter. I agree with you Smith on the pass through fishery, as we need to really look at when and where we allow king fishing to take place. We fish the Kenai a long ways from the mouth at times and this might be contributing to our situation. I think the days of fishing kings above Slikok are numbered. As for "hanging a hog" those days are numbered as well. The 42" cap would give those hogs a free pass. Fiberglass is a great way to go. Make it as big as you want and it will last forever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by smithtb View Post
    I've been thinking a lot about the Kasilof PU fishery. There are few rules down there, and DNR seems hellbent on increasing access without management plans. One thing I would like to see established are clear rules on motorized boat use in this fishery. There are currently none to my knowledge - basically whatever you have the stones to launch. I believe someone even launched a pickup last year... Honestly, I'd like to see that PU fishery go no motors, but my submitting a proposal to that effect might come with some... undesirable blowback. I am interested if anyone else has thought about this. I would think there are some inriver users concerned about this as well. The Ditch has been a pretty quiet river for a long time, and to many that is the appeal. Powerboat use has increased, and will do so rapidly if Parks and DNR somehow fund their planned lower river projects. Would be nice to see some proactive rules before it turns into a show like the Kenai.

    I'm not looking to restrict access simply for the sake of doing so, but I think it's OK to look at the Kenai zoo and not like what I see. No blame to anyone participating, but I don't want that for the Kasilof, and for some reason it seems like that is what DNR is encouraging. Hoping to work together with other user groups to create some structure on the Kasilof, while still providing access for as many as is sustainable.
    On the contrary, there are plenty of rules in the Kasilof PU fishery....when you can fish, what gear you can use, which species you can retain, and how many, so I don't quite see where you're going there. As for power boats in the lower river, it's not the dippers driving like a bat outta hell, it's the commies, waking people on shore just for the fun of it....
    " Gas boats are bad enough, autos are an invention of the devil, and airplanes are worse." ~Allen Hasselborg

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by akcarv View Post
    As for "hanging a hog" those days are numbered as well.
    Then who cares if they get smaller so long as they are healthy? I don't like the push against harvesting fish.

    Quote Originally Posted by cdubbin View Post
    On the contrary, there are plenty of rules in the Kasilof PU fishery....when you can fish, what gear you can use, which species you can retain, and how many, so I don't quite see where you're going there. As for power boats in the lower river, it's not the dippers driving like a bat outta hell, it's the commies, waking people on shore just for the fun of it....
    It's also illegal to steal things and kill people. Sounds like a well regulated fishery...

    Of course that is not what I was talking about. Much of the structure in the Kenai PU fishery has come from the City of Kenai. Regardless of what some may think, they have done more to deal with this fishery than any other entity. Nearby residents like myself are thankful for things like parking/camping limits, ATV regulation, enforcement, 4 stroke, no wake, beach cleaning - this has all been effective and I'm not aware of any of this action on the Kasilof. Not saying they all are needed, but obviously we need more structure than simply regulating when you can fish and what gear you can use. Currently, there are no regulations from dumping your Thunderjet in at the bridge and tearing up and down the Kasilof dipping all day long. I don't want that for the Kasilof, and I think many would agree.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smithtb View Post
    Then who cares if they get smaller so long as they are healthy?
    Surely, you don't mean that do you? That would suggest that quantity of fish (#'s) is important, while quality (body size) may not be.

    My sense is that much of the disagreements between user groups center around whether we should be concerned about numbers or size. Those folks advocating for escapement goals (OEG, SEG, etc) seem to suggest that quantity is most important while the folks who emphasize "conserving Kenai Kings" are advocating for larger body size, rather than just numbers of adults. I realize it ain't that simple, but suggesting that we should advocate for quantity without fully understanding the importance of body size (particularly for Kenai Rv Chinook) does not fully appreciate the life cycle and biological history of these fish. Achieving a large body size, which is unique to the Kenai (and a few other rivers), suggests that body size is critically important to their long-term survival.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cohoangler View Post
    Surely, you don't mean that do you? That would suggest that quantity of fish (#'s) is important, while quality (body size) may not be.

    My sense is that much of the disagreements between user groups center around whether we should be concerned about numbers or size. Those folks advocating for escapement goals (OEG, SEG, etc) seem to suggest that quantity is most important while the folks who emphasize "conserving Kenai Kings" are advocating for larger body size, rather than just numbers of adults. I realize it ain't that simple, but suggesting that we should advocate for quantity without fully understanding the importance of body size (particularly for Kenai Rv Chinook) does not fully appreciate the life cycle and biological history of these fish. Achieving a large body size, which is unique to the Kenai (and a few other rivers), suggests that body size is critically important to their long-term survival.

    Correction Coho - everyone wants A LOT of BIG fish, that's the problem!

    Relative to my question - if you saw the framed pictures on my walls, you'd know I was fishing... I do think that much of our attraction to and concern for the big Kings is emotional and to their detriment - to the degree that we are responsible for their decline.

    I don't think we fully understand the importance of body size. One word - Jacks. Undoubtedly body size and age/size at return is important to their long-term survival. Runs like the Kenai, which have 1,2,3,4,5,&6 ocean fish returning are unique, and I'd bet that at different times in their long history, different age classes survived better and were key to the run's long term survival. It seems that current conditions on a macro level favor the younger age classes, as their prominence is a broad trend if I'm not mistaken. I think the fish know what's best, and hopefully those 5&6 ocean genes are being passed through younger fish. Either way, on a macro level there is not much we can do but sit, wait, and enjoy what nature has to offer even if it's not the BIGGEST we've ever seen.

    On a micro level we seem to have a problem with the early returning Kings and the big/old Kings. And especially the early returning big/old Kings. So if I was looking to solve problems on a micro scale I would start by carefully examining the largest pressures on the early and large kings. I'll leave it at that.

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    Just want to toss this out. I think that years ago when the ESSN's were in the water more that a larger number of the smaller Kings were taken in the nets. Now with the reduced fishing time of ESSN's more of the younger age class genes are being passed on, and the fact the BIG KINGS have been the target of in river users for years we are going to have a larger percentage of smaller Kings.

  13. #13

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    MGH55...Partly true but not entirely. The ESSN is still taking a large percentage of smaller fish during the LR and yes they are fishing somewhat less than they historically did. But that doesn't explain what is occurring in the ER where there is literally no commercial harvest. The ER has seen even larger disparities between small fish and large fish with very low returns of 1.4 and female fish. I believe we have over harvested this sub-species of Kenai Kings. We have harvested them longer during the season May - the end of July, targeted the big mainstem spawners, and ADF&G probably over estimated the escapements fdor years because they counted all harvest after July 1 against the LR. That management practice alone contributed to a fatal flaw in the ER management scheme. Because of these factors we badly altered the age class distribution of the ER and it will probably take us several generations of very conservative management to rectify this situation. We all have to be on board to accepting conservation measures on the ER if we truly care about the wellbeing of this particular resource

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    I think you said what I said, just with more words

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKPacman View Post
    MGH55...Partly true but not entirely. The ESSN is still taking a large percentage of smaller fish during the LR and yes they are fishing somewhat less than they historically did. But that doesn't explain what is occurring in the ER where there is literally no commercial harvest. The ER has seen even larger disparities between small fish and large fish with very low returns of 1.4 and female fish. I believe we have over harvested this sub-species of Kenai Kings. We have harvested them longer during the season May - the end of July, targeted the big mainstem spawners, and ADF&G probably over estimated the escapements fdor years because they counted all harvest after July 1 against the LR. That management practice alone contributed to a fatal flaw in the ER management scheme. Because of these factors we badly altered the age class distribution of the ER and it will probably take us several generations of very conservative management to rectify this situation. We all have to be on board to accepting conservation measures on the ER if we truly care about the well-being of this particular resource

    You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to AKPacman again.

    Disproportionate harvest over the past 4 decades has exerted powerful selection pressures on the "winning" Kenai king phenotype.

    Prematurely lifting ER protections (particularly the bait ban and slot limit) on July 1 is a HUGE reason why those ER conservation measures have borne no fruit.

    Time to bite the bullet. Biologically, we either make sure ER protections carry over all the way thru the entire month of July, or transition over to a limited pass-thru fishery that takes a small bite of the entire king population (early and late) thru the full spectrum of run-timing. Neither will be popular with in-river users.
    "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
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    Quote Originally Posted by akcarv View Post
    Another proposal idea that might give the early run a bit more relief, would be to shift the late run season a week later and make up for lost days by fishing into August. Closing the king fishery the first week of July would allow more late returning ,early run ,main stem spawners ,more time to travel into spawning closure areas, or at least above the open fishing area. Less early run fish will be counted as late run harvest, which has always been a problem. The July 1 bait opener has traditionally hammered those big pink, late returning early run fish. All of the conservation efforts that we have been using in May and June are wasted when we go catch and keep with bait July 1. Starting the late run fishing one week later with no bait would really give the early run some relief.
    Been ruminating on this idea (the 1 week break starting July 1 and tacking the lost king days onto the end of the season), and it makes a lot of sense.

    The past 10 years have seen a trend where there are exceedingly FEW big fish entering the river in the first week of July. The river basically sees no new push of large Kenai caliber kings until late in the third week of July.

    Any large fish caught in the open fishing zone in the first week of July (lately, the reach downstream of the Slikok sanctuary) is exceedingly likely to be an ER king still lingering in the open fishing zone... the very fish we've been trying to protect thru all of May-June since about 2003. Those fish deserve a free pass, but for the past decade-plus they've gotten badly burned in the first week of July as all of the ER restrictions are lifted. Fully protected all of May and June, then suddenly fair game to a lethal dose of wood shampoo because the calendar kicked over a day. No different than putting on a long sleeve shirt first thing in the morning to prevent getting burnt by the sun, only to take it off at 2 in the afternoon. Still gonna get burnt! Let's buck up and finish the job of protecting these fish.

    If we can't get a July slot limit passed (release everything > 42 inches), the one week "rec window" would go a long ways in ensuring these fish escape the fishery.

    Can someone else send some rep akcarv's way?

    PLEASE!?
    "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

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