LOWER KENAI RIVER CLOSED TO FISHING FOR SOCKEYE SALMON Sport fishing for sockeye salmon, including catch-and-release fishing, will close downstream of the Kenai River sockeye salmon sonar counter located at river mile 19, effective 12:01 a.m., Friday, August 1. Anglers may not retain or possess sockeye salmon. Anglers must immediately release any sockeye salmon caught incidentally while fishing for other species. The department is taking efforts to reduce the harvest of Kenai River sockeye salmon. This closure is part of an effort by the department which also includes restrictions in commercial fishing to reduce the harvest of sockeye salmon to achieve an in-river sonar estimate of 750,000 – 950,000 sockeye salmon.
Anglers are reminded the Kenai River personal use salmon dipnet fishing season is also closed by regulation at 11:00 p.m., Thursday, July 31.
The department is closely monitoring the sockeye salmon return and will take further management actions as necessary to meet the in-river goal and the optimum escapement goal. These management actions may include further restrictions to the fisheries with short notice, or, if the run strength significantly increases, management actions could include rescinding the restrictions placed on the fisheries.