Upper Cook Inlet Salmon Fisheries Are Divided Into Two Districts:
The Central District extends from near the Anchor River to the forelands north of the Kenai River. The Northern District is made up of everything north of the forelands Cook Inlet Has Been the Center of Salmon Disputes Between Consumptive Users and Commercial Fishers For Years:
Cook Inlet commercial fishers have seen nearly record harvests the last three years, and these near record harvests in Cook Inlet equate only to 3% of the total of all salmon harvested and sold state wide. In comparison, more than 65% of state wide consumptive use and sport fishing occurs in Cook Inlet as does the majority of the personal use dip netting
Current Cook Inlet Salmon Harvest Shares from 2000-2006:
Commical Fishing harvest25,663,571 82%
Consumptive user harvast (folks that take salmon to home eat) 5,691,224 18%
What does the Northern District of Cook Inlet Require?
First and foremost is to recognize that the Northern District salmon resources are as important as other areas in Cook Inlet.
Management strategies for all five salmon species must be developed in Cook Inlet which should includes:
Conducting genetic studies of each species from the harvest
data to determine migration routes through Cook Inlet.
Studies to determine true wild stock escapements.
Studies to determine extent of spawning areas.
Any other type of study needed to reestablish traditionallevels of wild salmon stocks in the Northern District
Problem Areas Northern District:
Division of Commercial Fishing does not have enough
up-front data to make preseason and in-season
forecasts with the accuracyneeded to protect Northern
Escapement goals have been reduced in the northern
district streams to make it easier to manage the ones in
the central district.
The Yentna River and Fish Creek in the Northern
District have repeatedly missed their escapement goals.
Why are these fisheries considered secondary to Central
Current management plans do not protect stocks
moving through the inlet in July before the 20th or 25th .
Fish Creek Escapement Goal Has been Manipulated
The Division of Commercial Fishing subtracted
all of the hatchery sockeye salmon from the
return that had included them in the 50,000 fish
escapement goal. Then they recommended to
the Board of Fisheries to reduce the escapement
by 30,000 to 20,000 native sockeye salmon
The Department has arbitrarily made the
decision to count both native and hatchery fish in
their return counts which is contrary to policy.
Fish Creek has repeatedly missed its escapement goals over the last ten years.
Major issues facing the Northern District and
requires Immediate Action:
Cook Inlet is managed like no other fishery in Alaska. Set nets are allowed out to nearly a mile, virtually unrestricted commercial fishing is allowed before accurate in season forecast can be made.
The Northern District is a desert of knowledge, there have been no in depthstudies (except for the current sockeye salmon genetic studies underway). Since the Subsistence user Hydro Programs.
Alaska Department of Fish and Game has not established biological escapement goals for the majority of the salmon returns in Upper Cook Inlet. Because they do not have th need data. The only escapement goals are for sockeye salmon.The Little Susitna River has a weir that is located above Houstion.
The Deshka River is the only in season coho data point that is days up Susitna River from tide water.
What Is Needed For Cook Inlet In 2007 and 2008?
Individuals and groups need to support the scientific
management of all species of salmon equally.
Insure that the department protects Northern
District stocks as they migrate through the
Support the proposals that have been submitted
to reestablish sound, conservative salmon
Chum Salmon harvest has dropped from 1.1 million in 1988 to less than 100,000 over the last three years.
Cook Inlet 2005 Commercial Fishing Income
Set Net Permits Total 737
Resident 613, Nonresident 122
Value of permits in 1990 $98,514, Value 2005 $10,000
Drift Permits Total 571 Resident 404, Nonresident 166
Value of permits in 1990 $202,058, Value in 2005 $39,300
2005 was a record harvest for Cook Inlet commercial fishers. The over all average price paid for Cook Inlet
salmon was 89.5 cents apound
The total Cook Inlet salmon harvest is approximately 3% of the total state wide salmon harvest.
Cook Inlet Commercial Fishing Economic Effects 1990-2005
Set Net: Average permits fished annually 567
Set Net: Average Price per pound $0.95
Set Net: Average Value of a Drift permit $27,806.00
Drift Fleet: Average permits fished annually 518
Drift Fleet: Average price per pound $1.05
Drift Fleet: Average Value of a Drift permit $69,883.00
Limited Entry Permit Holders and Crew Members
MATANUSKA-SUSITNA BOROUGHNote these are state wide permits not just Cook Inlet
Permits holders 256
Crew members 279
Municipality of AnchorageNote these are state wide permits not just Cook InletCrew members 1,015
Permits holders 873
Who pays for Conservation?
“In a civilized and cultivated country, wild
animals only continue to exist when preserved
by sportsmen. The excellent people who protest
against all hunting and consider sportsmen as
enemies of wildlife do not understand the fact
that in reality the genuine sportsman is, by all
odds, the most important factor in keeping the
larger and more valuable wild creatures from
President Theodore Roosevelt
Anglers Pay for Conservation in Alaska
In 2003, 483,595 licenses were sold, generating $13 million in revenue to thesupport hatcheries.
In 2003, 292,844 were non-resident licenses, generating $9.6 million.
In 2006, 499,214 licenses were sold, generating $21 million, of which $6.8 million was facility bond revenue to
Important Source of Funding for Resource Management
Taxes on fishing equipment pay for many of the conservation efforts in Alaska and the country.
• Anglers are among the Nation’s most ardent conservationists and spend time and effort to introduce children and other newcomers to the enjoyment of the
Access, Infrastructure and Allocation Is Important
Public access and allocation for anglers to utilize state and federal fish resources iscritical for the recreational economy.
Basic infrastructure, such as boardwalks, trails and boat launches, must be developed and maintained to provide reasonable access while protectinghabitat.
Alaska Department of Fish and Game has Studies In Progress.
Genetics studies on Sockeye Salmon are being taken at several points from Lower Cook Inlet up to their spawning grounds.
This data will not be available for the February 2008 Board of Fishery hearings when new salmon management plans and regulations will be considered and implemented
Economic Study of Sport fishing spending in south central Alaska which is needed to give consumptive users information to reallocate salmon between user groups.
Need For Economic Information• Fishing is a major economic driver for the tourism industry.is scarce.
• Many Alaskans rely on fishing for recreational and consumptive uses.
• Outdoor recreation is a major component of the quality of life for residents.
• Up to date, comprehensive economic
information on this $1 billion dollar industry