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Thread: King Salmon in the valley.

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    Member Theone2's Avatar
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    Default King Salmon in the valley.

    What is your opinion on why the king fishing is not good in the valley??

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    Member Doug in Alaska's Avatar
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    Send me a PM. I'll take you for a ride out on the river and show you a few things. I've read your other posts and appreciate your enthusiasm.
    Someday someone may kill you with your own gun, but they should have to beat you to death with it because it is empty.

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    Member redleader's Avatar
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    same reason numbers are down in the whole region draggers stacking nets and taking thousands of pounds as bycatch

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    Member MRFISH's Avatar
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    Default a real can o' worms...

    There has been a lot of discussion in the Fisheries Management Forum. No agreement, of course, and some (though not all) of the discussion has been constructive and informative.

    My 2 cents: there is no single reason. It ranges from a variety of natural and man-made impacts, with a little natural fluctuation wrapped into it all.

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    Default well put....

    Quote: My 2 cents: there is no single reason. It ranges from a variety of natural and man-made impacts, with a little natural fluctuation wrapped into it all.



    natural impacts: remember the floods a few years back? I'm betting that hurt things just a little... just one example

    Man-made impacts: not touchin that one with a 10' pole!!

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    Member Hunt&FishAK's Avatar
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    well for the valley.....there was a MAJOR FLOOD about what 3-4 years back? betcha that wiped out alot of eggs and fry and probably allowed access for pike to move up with the high water and hang out till it went down, all the while gorging themselves on tasty little frys and smolts. I know alot of great holes and spawning beds were gone the following year. but im sure thats only a small part of it.

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    Member waterbustn''s Avatar
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    Default commercial by-catch

    My number may be off, but I have heard that the by-catch of kings was around 80,000 lbs.

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    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Lots of factors- you can't pin down any one. The flood of '06 followed two very dry years, that had extremely low and hot water conditions in the king spawning areas. Documented Bering Sea bycatch of kings is huge; no one is willing to find out where the kings are coming from. Undocumented bycatch by foreign high seas drifters is a total unknown. Ocean production could well be declining, too, as warm currents move back south. An indifferent public, and a management system that reacts to change very slowly, with struggle limited to user groups allocation and not resource conservation- conservation throughout the range of the resource, not just at small well defined points like streams. Its a lot easier to manage the fish when they're confined within a stream- if the salmon is in a stream, its pretty certain that its at its source.

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    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    Well, the average size king has gone down alot. Which means the bigger ones are getting caught and kept, meaning the smaller ones get to spawn, leading to fewer larger fish.

    Now why the # of kings is so low, I couldn't tell you. Many of the previously stated opinions are great starts though.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

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    Default kings

    It was pretty bad, but I caught and released 48 fair hooked kings this year. you just have to know how to fish them right.

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    Member redleader's Avatar
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    you guys are right on a combination of natural and man made problems, there's little that can be done with natural problems other than closing rivers, man made problems are the only thing that is controllable and maybe all these scientists and biologists should do the job there paid for and take a better look at controlling the commercial guys instead of just saying the ocean is a big black hole and we dont know.I don't think thats what there getting paid for

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    Default Putting things in perspective

    Bycatch has gone on since there was a commercial and sport or subistence fishery ANYWHERE together. That said, if the fish are coming in strong due to a healthy system, good weather, good ocean conditions, low predators elsewhere....whatever, you never even think twice about bycatch because if ALL of the fish returning to that river actually made it....density dependent mechanisms would not infinitely increase your return (I hesitate to use overescapement but we all get the idea I'm describing.)

    Now, enter a poor year due to any of the reasons mentioned above that are natural and all of a sudden bycatch is this big whoop that has to be stopped pronto.....the problem with this big red button pushing attitude is that it is only a stopgap measure to decrease bycatch. The REAL problem is that not as many fish returned....or smolts went out....that is where the real problem is and if the problem is significant enough, the only thing that stopping commercial fishing is going to do is to slow the decline of runs for a long drawn out lingering death when the inevitable would happen. (this is hypothetical...bear with me)

    So, many posts here so far are right....it's a combination...but a decline in habitat, an increase in fresh or saltwater mortality etc. takes a larger proportion out than bycatch of what is already a shrunken Cook Inlet commercial fishery. (jury still waiting on the pollack situation.)

    But, these things are not as visible so it's easy to blame the guy with the drift gill net when it could be 500 people slowly polluting a river by lawn products, sewage, shore development, wood removal,....and in the end could be the person making all the noise. And god save us all if it's increasing water temperatures and all the changes that brings with it.....and we can't stop it.

    Red Leader....most state and even federal biologists are hired to manage people more than they are a resource (users like you, me, everyone on this forum). Actual research divisions make up the minority of many agencies. AND, the job of stopping or changing commercial fisheries in the state of Alaska has more to do with politics and the public than it does biology....it's designed that way....for good and for bad.

    Would limiting or stopping bycatch help...maybe buy some time to find out what's going on?.....yes. IS it THE answer?.....no.

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    Member Hunt&FishAK's Avatar
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    ive heard a few comm fishin buddies of mine that fish the bering and chukchi seas that they get tons of kings as bycatch and they have to dump em over the side....dont know if there bs'in but it pisses me off just to hear it.

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    Default I will reiterate

    Quote Originally Posted by Hunt&FishAK View Post
    ive heard a few comm fishin buddies of mine that fish the bering and chukchi seas that they get tons of kings as bycatch and they have to dump em over the side....dont know if there bs'in but it pisses me off just to hear it.
    This has gone on for a looooong time, and the powers that be are not stuck in the sand regarding the fact that there is bycatch in other fisheries. And, up til recently runs have been largely sustained within biological relativity (fudge factor of mother nature)....so again, it (bycatch) certainly doesn't help if other factors are also aiding in loss of returning fish, but it is unlikely it (bycatch) is the main cause.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    But, these things are not as visible so it's easy to blame the guy with the drift gill net when it could be 500 people slowly polluting a river by lawn products, sewage, shore development, wood removal,....and in the end could be the person making all the noise.
    Well stated. Thank you.

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    Member redleader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    This has gone on for a looooong time, and the powers that be are not stuck in the sand regarding the fact that there is bycatch in other fisheries. And, up til recently runs have been largely sustained within biological relativity (fudge factor of mother nature)....so again, it (bycatch) certainly doesn't help if other factors are also aiding in loss of returning fish, but it is unlikely it (bycatch) is the main cause.
    been hereing people complain about the commercial guys all the time, thanks for shedding some light on the subject.

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    Quote Originally Posted by redleader View Post
    been hereing people complain about the commercial guys all the time, thanks for shedding some light on the subject.

    Completely understandable, commercial fishing is a highly visible, effective and direct source of mortality for salmon....not unlike predators in mammal populations....it's easier to imagine a moose calf dying at the claws of a bear or teeth of a wolf compared to starving in March in deep snow because the area has lower browse nutrition due to range age, fire suppression etc. that makes the area have lower production and thus not able to trump predation through twinning rates or calf survival as it may have in the past.

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