SHIP CREEK CLOSED TO ALL FISHING THROUGH JULY 13An emergency order has been issued to close the Ship Creek drainage to all sport fishing through September 30, 2009. The section of Ship Creek below the Chugach Power Plant dam will reopen July 14 for the popular coho salmon fishery.
These restrictions go into effect Monday, June 29, 2009.
The Elmendorf State Hatchery collects broodstock from king and coho salmon returning to the Ship Creek drainage. Recent years have seen an increase in illegal harvest of adult king and coho salmon in sections of the creek normally closed to salmon fishing. During the past five years, by June 23, approximately 40% of the king salmon escapement is above the fishery in waters closed to salmon fishing. This year, a survey conducted June 26 estimated 250 king salmon in Ship Creek, which is substantially less than the average escapement of 782 king salmon at this time.
Therefore, it is necessary to close the king salmon fishery downstream of the Chugach Power Plant Dam, and the waters above the dam to all sport fishing to ensure that adequate numbers of salmon return to the hatchery to meet broodstock and stocking goals.
Salmon smolt reared from broodstock collected from Ship Creek are used to enhance popular recreational salmon fisheries in the Anchorage Bowl, Knik Arm, Mat-Su Valleys, Prince William Sound, Resurrection Bay, and Kenai Peninsula, while reducing angling pressure on wild stocks.
For more information about this emergency order, contact Chuck Brazil, Fishery Biologist in Anchorage at (907) 267-2186.