I guess the sky ISN'T falling
83,000 reds came in the Kenai yesterday.......bringing the total to 350,000+ in the river, with an escapement goal (lower) of 400,000 as I recall........
I'd look for sport fishing to re-open for reds on the Kenai any day......
Can you spell P-O-L-I-T-I-C-S as far as closing down the 1-fish a day sport fishery down there ealier this week when F&G knew that slug of fish was out in the inlet? *LOL*
I was there Sunday - Wednesday and there was this gigantic sucking sound of tourist dollars leaving the Kenai Peninsula ........ sure was peaceful fishing for Kings and trout though......
You could have had a street hockey game in the parking lot at Bings when I launched there Tuesday evening
Not there yet, but getting closer
The SEG (sustainable escapement goal) range is 500,000 to 800,000 sockeye salmon. The sport fishery has harvested 150,000 sockeye above the sonar even on years of low returns. That means there needs to be closer to 650,000 headed past the sonar to keep escapement within the goal after harvest is removed. Hopefully the run continues to build and things can open back up.
Just out of curiosity, doesn't this have nay affect on the run headed to the Russian River? I know nothing has changed there with the usual 3 fish limit, just curious as to why that hasn't closed as well.
what ADF&G knew or did not know.
Below is the ADF&G run strength assessment that was made on 7/25/2006. As you can see there is a wide range (400,000 fish) on what was left in the return. If the run comes in on the bottom end no more fishing. If it is closer to the top then fishing may happen. For those who thought that ADF&G knew something and just closed for who knows what reason I think the data below should remove those feelings.
Also, the 1 fish bag limit was not allowed by the Board of Fish and was an illegal action by the Commissioner of ADF&G. If people want the sport fishery to go to one fish in times like this they should petition the Board of Fish for a special meeting. Next year may be like this one. Personnally, I have no problem with the 1 fish bag limit at certain escapement levels but the Board needs to define the criteria for ADF&G - left to their own they are then the allocative body for the harvest - not a good thing for them to do.
Assessment of Upper Cook Inlet Sockeye Salmon Run 7/25/06
On July 25, 2006, the Upper Cook Inlet (UCI) staff estimated that the total
UCI sockeye salmon run will likely range between 2.84 and 3.60 million fish.
This estimate was made using Offshore Testfish data to date and an
assessment that the run would likely be 2-4 days late. We estimate that 1.95
million sockeye salmon have returned to the inlet to date indicating that
0.89 to 1.64 million fish remain in the run. We estimate that the total
Kenai River sockeye salmon run will likely range between 0.99 and 1.39
million fish. We estimate that 0.53 million Kenai River sockeye salmon have
returned to date indicating that 0.46 to 0.86 million fish remain in the
We need to note, however, that there has not been an inlet-wide drift
gillnet fishing period since July 6. This detracts from our ability, and
perhaps accuracy, to calibrate the test fish data with commercial harvest
information. Therefore, these data reflect our best estimate with the data
that we have.
that since the RR fish/smolt didn't suffer the decline/decreased size due to turbidity in Skilak Lake and the resultant decrease in food ..... they figure that run should come in within the historic range...........not necessarily like it has the last FEW years because I think those have been VERY high returns.......but should hit what F&G figures is the norm for the Russian.....
could be a much higher percentage than normal of the fish going up the Kenai are headed to the Russian and upstream from there
yeah I was kind of suprised that there was ANY sport fishing for Reds on the Kenai when that fishery is supposedly managed for a commercial priority (which I've already stated in MY opinion doesn't make a whole lot of sense)
If the numbers continue to come in at the rate the are my fear is they will open up the river but let the commercial out. Which really means no fish for me and my fellow sport fish pee on's. Ask the guys down at Kasilof how they have been doing lately. So how about, will the put the nets back out if the fish show up? My freezer is getting low, I actually booked a charter next week, can you believe that?
the answer is yes
The plans are very clear on the reopening of the fisheries - commercial and sport. If they project the 650,000 they should reopen the sport fishery above the counters. The commercial fisheries, at a minimum, would fish regular periods on Monday and Thursday. To close those days requires a biological justification which in not the case if the hit 650,000. So time will tell.
If this year has over 600,000 fish in it by next week and they reopen then one should have no trouble finding fish if they are willing to look. If you just come down and fish the lower river it may be slow. Follow the fish came before follow the money.