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Thread: ADF&G Counting Chitina Kings?/King Closure

  1. #1

    Default ADF&G Counting Chitina Kings?/King Closure

    Could anyone tell me how they are counting the Kings on the Copper? They are not doing it by Sonar at Miles Lake because the data shown on the website only is for the Sockeyes.

    Frustrated Dipnetter

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Fairbanks, Farmers Loop Permafrost

    Default (not)Counting Kings

    At an annual meeting of the Chitina Dipnetters a couple years ago I asked if Fish and Game(the guy in charge of the Chitina Personnel Use fishery is usually there, plus a couple other Fish and Game people) had a fish counter that could tell the difference between a Kings and other Salmon and was told the one at Miles Lake could not but that technology was available. That seems like an obvious thing to get in to use. I mean right now its how many Kings are caught by the Commy fishers? and a 'Sampling' from Eak's(sp) fish wheel. Pretty weak tea it seems to me. We've hard numbers for escapement and allocation but no real numbers on the actual run!
    Another idea would be to have a fish counter at the upper end of the Dipnet Fishery which would give more accurate idea of when, for example, the bulk of surge of fish on a Supplemental Harvest Period are passing(or not) Mark Hem says he's very rarely seen the Supplemental Period match the actual surge from the 'extra' fish hit Chitina. Again it would seem more 'scientific' to time the heavier harvest to the actual 'extra' fish passing through at Chitina. Fish and Game seemed underwhelmed by these ideas. Maybe we need to 'encourage' them to take on such extra efforts. I can't see any argument against either the fish counter that would count Kings or a counter at the upper end of the Chitina Subdistrict. Other than it would be more work for Fish and Game.
    Maybe getting down to Chitina next week. I predict I'll return without a King for the third year in a row. It will hurt to net one though! or rather to have to let it go knowing the Commy fishers have already caught 5,000 plus! ouch!
    Paul Holland
    Board Member Chitina Dipnetters Association
    chitinadipnetters dot com

  3. #3


    The technology is definatley available. The 3 beamed transducer called the Ditson was tested out there about 5-7 years ago and is now the perferred system used for Fish and Game. They are fooling you if they say they aren't able to count them. They tested this unit in Dillingham on the Wood River as well. I was there. It's similar to a sonogram. You can actually see the fish and watch them swim by the transducer. They need to use this item and then they would be able to see the fish and identify which salmon it is. They claim that the poor clarity of the water does not allow them to see but that is why they tested it there. Push them to use the Ditson and it would be a better counting system than their old system the Bindex. This just uses the "ping" as in sonar so they could be picking up a log as well as a fish. Who knows....I am just bummed that we are not able to pick up a King. Why can't we just go back to the Subsistence label and still pay the 25$ we used to have to get the permit??? It was so easy then...

  4. #4


    So how old is the Bindex system that they are using? Just the Miles Lake Salmon Counting Sonar Station website is 12 years old. Certainly something must have changed in the last 12 years.

    Let's have some full disclosure from our State F&G.

  5. #5



    We fished the opener and personally witnessed 8 kings caught in 2 days. That seemed pretty normal for the number of parties there and the conditions.

    The Commercial Blue Sheet shows 7K kings caught this year, but doesn't show how that compares to other years. Anybody know where that info is posted?


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