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Thread: 2010 King Salmon management

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    Unhappy 2010 King Salmon management

    Ok, we all have by now heard that the Kenai King's are looking like they’re going to be hitting an all time low. However... Have you at any point heard that they’re going to shut the commercial fishing down, not that there is a Commercial king fishery, but because King salmon are a BYCATCH. What that means is that they cannot target them but they can catch retain and sell them on the market. A closure would increase the amount of King's currently moving into the Kenai and as a bonus would DRAMATICLY increase the Red salmon currently moving into the river.
    By now I know everyone is aware that commercial fisheries are the ones that pay for our fish and game. We should be thankful for this, but it is time that we start putting these runs first and commercial interests second. I am in no way saying that commercial fishing is not important, in fact it is. What I am saying is WE have a problem, Kings are ocean bound for between 3 and 5 years there obviously have been times when they have stayed out longer. But for some reason in the last few years the food for the kings or the predation in the ocean environment has changed. This is leaving us with weaker runs of Kings in our rivers. Last year it was the Susitna drainage, this year it is the Kenai. Do we really need to be told there is a problem? Stopping commercial fishing in these areas’s early and giving the Kings an opportunity to recover should not be a hard decision to make yet time and again it seems that our management folks can’t do it.
    Sometimes I wish I were a writer and that I never fished, it would make times like these easier. I think I must just need to go fish. And I know I'm leaving this open but that’s the way we do things in Alaska apparently.

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    Default not sure what you are talking about

    Quote Originally Posted by 1alaskaman View Post
    Ok, we all have by now heard that the Kenai King's are looking like they’re going to be hitting an all time low. However... Have you at any point heard that they’re going to shut the commercial fishing down, not that there is a Commercial king fishery, but because King salmon are a BYCATCH. What that means is that they cannot target them but they can catch retain and sell them on the market. A closure would increase the amount of King's currently moving into the Kenai and as a bonus would DRAMATICLY increase the Red salmon currently moving into the river.
    By now I know everyone is aware that commercial fisheries are the ones that pay for our fish and game. We should be thankful for this, but it is time that we start putting these runs first and commercial interests second. I am in no way saying that commercial fishing is not important, in fact it is. What I am saying is WE have a problem, Kings are ocean bound for between 3 and 5 years there obviously have been times when they have stayed out longer. But for some reason in the last few years the food for the kings or the predation in the ocean environment has changed. This is leaving us with weaker runs of Kings in our rivers. Last year it was the Susitna drainage, this year it is the Kenai. Do we really need to be told there is a problem? Stopping commercial fishing in these areas’s early and giving the Kings an opportunity to recover should not be a hard decision to make yet time and again it seems that our management folks can’t do it.
    Sometimes I wish I were a writer and that I never fished, it would make times like these easier. I think I must just need to go fish. And I know I'm leaving this open but that’s the way we do things in Alaska apparently.
    There is no commercial chinook fishery on early run Kenai or Kasilof chinook. So what are you talking about?

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    Default Let me be clearer

    There is no commercial eastside or drift fishery going on for any species right now. There season does not open until the end of June.

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    He must be talking about the in-river commercial fishery...the commercial sport fishery.

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    I am more interested in to what happened to the run, could some of it be contributed to the flood and ice jam-up we had winter 07?

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    I had already said there a BYCATCH not a target species. I also left it open for others to chime in.

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    Default not good enough

    Quote Originally Posted by 1alaskaman View Post
    I had already said there a BYCATCH not a target species. I also left it open for others to chime in.
    You said shut down commercial fishing. I asked what fishery are you talking about. There is no fishery going on for early Kenai or Kasilof species - there is no sockeye fishery, no chum fishery, no coho fishery, no chinook fishery, and no pink fishery. So are you talking about the offshore commercial fisheries like the trawl fishery? Just need to be clear what you are talking about.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1alaskaman View Post
    I had already said there a BYCATCH not a target species. I also left it open for others to chime in.
    Kenai Kings have increasingly become a "BYCATCH" of the in-river Rainbow/Dolly sport fishery. Once a spawning in-river King is pulled off it's redd by a trout fisherman, and maybe played out and handled to retrieve gear, the King can not possibly find it's redd again, or have enough energy to pair up and make another. It is a shame. ADFG is aware, but does nothing.

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    We need to come together on this issue and quite pointing fingers. Its not just one entity that is causing this. Everyone is contributing to this problem. Are commercial people over harvesting? Are sport fishing people over harvesting? Is the habitat being depleted due to boats running up and down the river with 50 hp motors?Or shoreline people going in off limit places. What I do know is that if a problem is not fixed we will end up JUST LIKE CALIFORNIA!!! I think everyone takes for granted that the Salmon will always be here and keep taking.
    If we are supplementing with hatchery fish, Then we are consuming more then what we can consume naturally. These are the Questions that should be answered honestly.
    Just my opinion on this

  10. #10

    Default What are you saying?

    Quote Originally Posted by Grampyfishes View Post
    Kenai Kings have increasingly become a "BYCATCH" of the in-river Rainbow/Dolly sport fishery. Once a spawning in-river King is pulled off it's redd by a trout fisherman, and maybe played out and handled to retrieve gear, the King can not possibly find it's redd again, or have enough energy to pair up and make another. It is a shame. ADFG is aware, but does nothing.
    Kenai River kings spawn in the Kenai River from the Beaver Creek area upstream to Kenai Lake and beyond. Are you implying that ADFG is delinquent in their duties because they do not close sportfishing for rainbows and dollies upstream of Beaver Creek on the Kenai river because of king "bycatch?" Please explain.

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    The majority of first run kings in the kenai are tributary spawners and are not subject to any fishing pressure or habitat degradation. I would like to hear grampy's reasoning behind his post along with what he thinks F&G should do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yukon View Post
    The majority of first run kings in the kenai are tributary spawners and are not subject to any fishing pressure or habitat degradation. I would like to hear grampy's reasoning behind his post along with what he thinks F&G should do.
    He just likes to argue and poke holes in everyone elses opinion LOL

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    Default true but not complete

    Quote Originally Posted by yukon View Post
    The majority of first run kings in the kenai are tributary spawners and are not subject to any fishing pressure or habitat degradation. I would like to hear grampy's reasoning behind his post along with what he thinks F&G should do.
    This is a true statement but a large portion of the early run chinook once spawned in the mainstem. Also, tributary fish hold in the mainstem well into July.

    Also, saying they are not subject to habitat degradation is not correct. The tribs are getting hit along with the mainstem on the Kenai... this ranges from bad culverts blocking or impeding passage, land clearing, water quality degradation, hydro-electric development, and the list goes on. To say that the tribs are not subject to habitat degradation is not correct.

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    Nerka, I was thinking along the lines of the Killey river system which holds the majority of the first run fish. That system and the majority of the Funny river system aren't developed or fished. My comments were in reference to Grampy's indication that trout fishermen are pulling these fish off the beds. I agree, I shouldn't have say they aren't subject "any" habitat degradation. Again, I was thinking of the Killey system when I was typing.
    As far as June tributary fish holding into July that is also true. If I remember correctly, when F&G used to do more research on the Killey system they said 95% of the Killey river fish entered the system by July 15, hence they would open the closed area. Now that closure, as all of them are, are closed until July 31st, protected that last 5% of the fish.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerka View Post
    Also, saying they are not subject to habitat degradation is not correct. The tribs are getting hit along with the mainstem on the Kenai... this ranges from bad culverts blocking or impeding passage, land clearing, water quality degradation, hydro-electric development, and the list goes on. .
    BTW, you should see the political pressure being put on certain individuals, by groups, cities, and companies over the hydro-electric proposal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Papi View Post
    Kenai River kings spawn in the Kenai River from the Beaver Creek area upstream to Kenai Lake and beyond. Are you implying that ADFG is delinquent in their duties because they do not close sportfishing for rainbows and dollies upstream of Beaver Creek on the Kenai river because of king "bycatch?" Please explain.
    I'm not going to speak for GF, but he does make a relevant point.



    Kings like this hooked with fly gear intended for trout should NOT be played to exhaustion with ridiculously light gear. After the first few headshakes when it becomes apparent the angler has hooked a big king in closed waters, the ethical thing to do is to simply break it off.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Nor should they be fought to exhaustion on any gear, dragged near the bank and pulled halfway out for a "hero shot".

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    Just for the record, in no way am I suggesting that the trout fishery is a bad thing or that it needs to stop.

    Bottom line is that every legitimate fishery has a target species. That's why the fishery exists in the first place.

    By the same token, virtually every fishery encounters one or more NON-target species. So called by-catch is just part of what happens if the fishery is to take place at some meaningful level.

    Realistically, you're not going to eliminate that by-catch. In the end, it's all about how the "by-catch" is treated and whether or not the vast majority of that by-catch survives the encounter. If the target fishery is conducted with a healthy respect for and careful handling of NON-target species, it can reasonably be justified.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Default hydro -too much of risk

    Quote Originally Posted by yukon View Post
    BTW, you should see the political pressure being put on certain individuals, by groups, cities, and companies over the hydro-electric proposal.
    The grant lake studies by HEA showed that between 600-700 spawned in Grant Creek last year. When you add in the harvest it means this steam is producing on the order of 1000 early run chinook (assumption here given it is a trib). If that is correct then with what we are seeing right now it is worth 4 MW of power to take a risk of taking early run chinook into the ditch more frequently? It does not make sense to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Papi View Post
    Kenai River kings spawn in the Kenai River from the Beaver Creek area upstream to Kenai Lake and beyond. Are you implying that ADFG is delinquent in their duties because they do not close sportfishing for rainbows and dollies upstream of Beaver Creek on the Kenai river because of king "bycatch?" Please explain.
    ADFG has made no attempt to grasp the seriousness or extent of the trout fishery on spawning Kings, nor do they include that exploitation in their management rationale. Hundreds and hundreds of Kings are hooked and pulled off their redds due to the trout fishery...few of which I believe are able to find their redd again, or group up and make another redd and spawn. And lets not forget we are at a point when the King fishery is so bad it is completely closed. Do you work for ADFG Big Papi?

    I did not mention closing sportfishing for rainbows and dollies. However that would be one simple solution, particularly when the Kings are in peril. Other alternatives might be trout fishery timing, location and gear restrictions, reporting, etc. Unless you can justify trout sportfishing opportunity over the survival of Kenai Kings, I fail to see why you would disagree.

    yukon, what is your reasoning and what do you think ADFG should do? Hopefully this time you'll take a stand with your answer rather than innocently ride the fence.

    kgpcr...you show lots of personal attack - but little discussion on the merits. Where do you live again?...Mississippi?

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