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Thread: Time to sue the feds

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    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Default Time to sue the feds

    Is it time for the state to take on the feds in their management of the pollock fishery? With the shape of the state's overall king returns, the number of rivers statewide that have been closed, not only this season but the last 2 as well, should we accept 60,000 reported kings in one fishery as an acceptable bycatch number?

    I think it is time for the state to sue the federal government for their management of the pollock fishery, citing the Magnuson Stevens act regarding managing for sustainable fisheries. The current state of king returns in the state would indicate that someone is failing to manage for sustainability. The feds feel that it is ok to wipe out 60,000 kings annually in the pollock fishery, with no accounting of the drainages for which they're bound. This is wrong. Add up all the escapements in this state right now, look at the in-river spawning, subsistence, personal use and sport fish needs, and I doubt you will find that big of a surplus available. It is time to stand up as a state and declare to the feds that we've had enough.

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    Member salmon_bone's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post
    Is it time for the state to take on the feds in their management of the pollock fishery? With the shape of the state's overall king returns, the number of rivers statewide that have been closed, not only this season but the last 2 as well, should we accept 60,000 reported kings in one fishery as an acceptable bycatch number?

    I think it is time for the state to sue the federal government for their management of the pollock fishery, citing the Magnuson Stevens act regarding managing for sustainable fisheries. The current state of king returns in the state would indicate that someone is failing to manage for sustainability. The feds feel that it is ok to wipe out 60,000 kings annually in the pollock fishery, with no accounting of the drainages for which they're bound. This is wrong. Add up all the escapements in this state right now, look at the in-river spawning, subsistence, personal use and sport fish needs, and I doubt you will find that big of a surplus available. It is time to stand up as a state and declare to the feds that we've had enough.
    AMEN!!!
    Well Said!

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    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Human exploitation in marine waters....

    The unaccounted black hole that no one wants to tackle when considering "poor ocean conditions".
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

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    Member fullbush's Avatar
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    Maybe we should sue trout unlimited for their pompous stance on catch and release fishing for rainbows, rainbows kill more kings than the draggers. Lets sue the sportys that trample through the spawning beds maiming the spawners. Theres many reasons kings are in jeopardy, the draggers can't be good for them, I'll grant you that, but lawsuits? Whatever happened to civil uprisings and random acts of violence? I hate lawyers!

  5. #5

    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by fullbush View Post
    Maybe we should sue trout unlimited for their pompous stance on catch and release fishing for rainbows, rainbows kill more kings than the draggers. Lets sue the sportys that trample through the spawning beds maiming the spawners. Theres many reasons kings are in jeopardy, the draggers can't be good for them, I'll grant you that, but lawsuits? Whatever happened to civil uprisings and random acts of violence? I hate lawyers!
    Yup Yup Yup,
    The Rainbows and Dollies need to be removed from the spawning/rearing waters.

    You don't see Greenpeace and the other activists standing around wringing their hands or standing before a judge pleading their case. They actually walk the talk, even if you can't stand them, you gotta respect them for the way they take care of business.
    "96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
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    Default you have to be kidding

    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post
    Is it time for the state to take on the feds in their management of the pollock fishery? With the shape of the state's overall king returns, the number of rivers statewide that have been closed, not only this season but the last 2 as well, should we accept 60,000 reported kings in one fishery as an acceptable bycatch number?

    I think it is time for the state to sue the federal government for their management of the pollock fishery, citing the Magnuson Stevens act regarding managing for sustainable fisheries. The current state of king returns in the state would indicate that someone is failing to manage for sustainability. The feds feel that it is ok to wipe out 60,000 kings annually in the pollock fishery, with no accounting of the drainages for which they're bound. This is wrong. Add up all the escapements in this state right now, look at the in-river spawning, subsistence, personal use and sport fish needs, and I doubt you will find that big of a surplus available. It is time to stand up as a state and declare to the feds that we've had enough.
    First the Federal government is the proper management group for this resource and they retain ownership of the salmon resources - if you are going to cite Mag/Stevens.

    Second, 60,000 chinook in the polluck harvest is strickly an allocation issue. There are no data to support your proposition that this is causing resource concerns. In fact, the Pacific Decad. Oscillation is more likely a cause of poor returns.

    Will you also fail to take responsibility for your own backyard. Habitat issues prevail in all drainages - some more than others.

    Your position basically says that king salmon are more important to you than a polluck fishery that feeds millions. Not a position I share. Bycatch can be reduced but your position is not defendable with data or rationale thinking. It is time to bash the Federal government for the State's own failure to manage the resource - pike, beaver dams, habitat destruction, poor monitoring of the resource, and a Department of Fish and Game who would not take action on a stream that had only 16 spawners. So frankly your posts gets some emotional responses but not good thinking on this issue.

  7. #7

    Question

    Quote Originally Posted by fullbush View Post
    Whatever happened to civil uprisings and random acts of violence? I hate lawyers!
    Now having identified the problem, what do you suggest?
    "96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
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    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerka View Post
    First the Federal government is the proper management group for this resource and they retain ownership of the salmon resources - if you are going to cite Mag/Stevens.

    Second, 60,000 chinook in the polluck harvest is strickly an allocation issue. There are no data to support your proposition that this is causing resource concerns. (hmmm... 3 separate studies indicating birth streams on Pollock bycaught kings- thats no data?) (also, Nerka, has there never been a study to show that if a salmon is killed before reaching a river to spawn, that there will be a 0% return of that salmon's progeny?) In fact, the Pacific Decad. Oscillation is more likely a cause of poor returns.

    Will you also fail to take responsibility for your own backyard. Habitat issues prevail in all drainages - some more than others.

    Your position basically says that king salmon are more important to you than a polluck fishery that feeds millions. Not a position I share. Bycatch can be reduced but your position is not defendable with data or rationale thinking. It is time to bash the Federal government for the State's own failure to manage the resource - pike, beaver dams, habitat destruction, poor monitoring of the resource, and a Department of Fish and Game who would not take action on a stream that had only 16 spawners. So frankly your posts gets some emotional responses but not good thinking on this issue.
    So habitat is the problem with all the threatened chinook systems in the state? Right...

    No data showing where the fish are being caught? Then provide the data! Then tell us its ok to take 60,000+ kings annually with no accounting for where they come from- until there is better data showing this is an acceptable amount of fish, stop! that's simple enough.

    and by the way... there is data showing where they come from- Nerka himself has pointed that out numerous times in past postings... including one study showing 30% came from the Cook Inlet, another showing 4%... so we can figure that the proportion of fish coming from any one drainage will change year to year- we need to know more, not just bury our head in the sand, say, "we don't KNOW that killing 60,000 fish at sea is hurting any runs, (so therefore we won't worry about it, nor will we figure out where they are comign from so we can continue to ignore its consequences)"

    This is my position... I'm sticking to it. Runs are in trouble, and we need to figure out why, and do whatever is in our power to keep them from collapsing. Lowering ALL sources of mortality, especially human caused, is a logical step! Claiming that a huge source of mortality is just fine, though little is KNOWN about exact origins of those fish, defies all logic in the face of chinook returns statewide.

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    Default never said what you claimed

    Willphish4food - your post is more emotion that fact. I never said research should be stopped. You posted that we should sue the federal government for not sustaining the resource. I took issue with that and pointed out that sustainability is also a function of the State in both fishery closures but also in habitat and invasive species management.

    Relative to 60,000 fish I believe there is some genetic work but frankly I do not have time to look it up. You posted that the federal government is not doing its job so maybe you can post the data and why they are failing. Poor returns for a couple of years is nothing new. In the 70's when the PDO was in the cold phase returns were poor across the state. You reference point is too short to make any meaningful decisions and not all systems are failing as you claim. The Deshka is above the goal, Kenai early run is above the goal, and other systems are going to meet goals. So your claim is without much merit.

  10. #10

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    Actually the Deshka is within the goal, not above.
    Although some goals will be met, that doesn't reflect total run abundance nor is reflective of a good run. Many restrictions were put into place to reduce harvest and make those goals. Systems that fail to provide for historic yields can also lead to a stock of concern.

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    Default true

    Quote Originally Posted by commfish View Post
    Actually the Deshka is within the goal, not above.
    Although some goals will be met, that doesn't reflect total run abundance nor is reflective of a good run. Many restrictions were put into place to reduce harvest and make those goals. Systems that fail to provide for historic yields can also lead to a stock of concern.
    True but a stock of yield concern has to have a longer data base.

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    Default Seeing a problem, then looking for answers

    Its not worth fighting with Nerka... I realize that. Let the facts be my answer. Restrictions to king fishing, that I can think of this year, have taken place in sport fisheries on the Theodore, Lewis, Chuit, Little Su, all Unit 2 (Parks Highway) Susitna drainages, the Talkeetna and Chulitna Rivers, Karluk and Ayakulik in Kodiak, Kenai River, lower Kenai Peninsula Rivers, and the Nushagak. The Deshka and Kenai restrictions were lifted; Parks Hwy streams, Little Su, and Theodore, Lewis and Chuit completely closed. Northern District setnet was restricted to fishing south of the Chuit River.

    I make the claim that king runs throughout the state are in trouble, and that the facts back that claim. You be the judge.

    Nerka claims that "Your position basically says that king salmon are more important to you than a polluck fishery that feeds millions." His words, not mine.

    No, my position is that maximizing exploitation in one fishery at the cost of other fisheries is an unacceptable policy. Just saying that the fishery is not bad for other fisheries, because data quantifying the actual impacts is missing, is not acceptable either. We know chinook salmon are caught in the pollock fishery: they have to come from somewhere. We also know many chinook salmon runs throughout Southcentral and Western Alaska are below threshold levels.

    It should be the federal governments responsibility, as managers of the pollock fishery, to provide the studies to prove that their management of the fishery, with its 60,000 chinook cap, is not negatively impacting other fisheries in this state, and is in fact sustainable. Period.

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    Default fisheries are sustainable

    At 60,000 chinook the fisheries are sustainable. Also, you assume that these 60,000 fish are all going to make it back to their home streams. That is not going to happen - I am sure someone has looked at the age composition and impact of this harvest on chinook stocks.

    Willphish4food - you always make a biological issue to get an allocative objective. The systems you cite for closure have had fisheries on them and there is no data to support they are not sustainable fisheries. That is what the data indicates if you say you want the data to speak for you.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post

    It should be the federal governments responsibility, as managers of the pollock fishery, to provide the studies to prove that their management of the fishery, with its 60,000 chinook cap, is not negatively impacting other fisheries in this state, and is in fact sustainable. Period.
    I agree 100%.

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    Default what do you want

    270 what do you want. They federal regulators have a scientific review board, they look at lots of data, and they have numerous meetings. What exactly makes you think they are not doing what you and will are requesting? I guess I am asking that will and you back up the claim that they are not doing anything of substance.

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    Member bushrat's Avatar
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    Willphish,

    I have to agree with Nerka that suing the feds doesn't make much sense.

    However, I think bycatches in the 60,000 range, when at the same time we are seeing poor returns and it's especially impacted subsistence harvests of kings in the Yukon drainages, are valid concerns we need to somehow address.

    And attempts have been made to address the bycatch issue...it's just that many (including myself) were not pleased with the resulting decision that still allows for certain (high) levels of bycatch by the pollock fleet. Having said that, I will wait and see how the new incentives for the pollack fleet work out to avoid bycatch and we'll see if it decreases.

    It's also true that we have other maritime and riverine issues contributing to decreases or poor returns. Some of which we can't control, and some that we still aren't sure of, like acidification.

    FYI, we finally got enough king (genetic) samples to ADFG from our Yukon tributary so that they can add us to the genetic mapping. I do think the genetic work will help us to better track down just what stocks the pollack fleet are catching so we can get a better idea of things. In the valley you guys have problems we don't have here, some of which Nerka mentioned, that also contribute to poor returns.

    Just saying it's a multi-faceted issue. In the end, suing the feds isn't any kind of answer.
    Sincerely,

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    Great post bushrat. Willfish your sky is falling routine gets old. It would be one thing if you hadn't been presented with links and information about everything you are asking many times in the past. Makes me think you have absolutely no memory or something....but my memory isn't all that great anymore either.

    Here is a great powerpoint about the issue.
    http://www.fakr.noaa.gov/npfmc/curre...lection609.pdf

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    Default info from a google search on council website. under current issues.

    SALMON AND POLLOCK
    Salmon support large and critically important commercial, recreational, and subsistence fisheries throughout Alaska and elsewhere. Salmon management programs, including significant investments in hatchery capacity to supplementnatural runs, occur in Russia, Korea, and Japan, as well as for North American stocks in Canada, Alaska, and the Pacific Northwest. In addition, salmon are taken incidentally in offshore groundfish trawl fisheries,especially in the pollock pelagic trawl fishery. Nearly all salmon taken as bycatch are Chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and chum salmon (O. keta). The origin of salmon taken as bycatch in the Bering Sea includes rivers in western,southcentral and southeast Alaska, Asia, British Columbia, Washington, and Oregon.

    HISTORY OF BYCATCH CONTROL MEASURES
    In the mid1990s, the Council and NOAA Fisheries implemented regulations to control the bycatch of chum and Chinook salmon taken in the BSAI trawl fisheries. These regulations established closures in areas and at times when salmon bycatch had been highest, based on historical observer data. The BSAI Groundfish Fishery Management Plan (FMP) specifies prohibited species catch (PSC) limits for catch of nonChinook and Chinook salmon by the directed pollock fishery. When these limits are reached, the FMP authorizes regulatory measures to close the specified areas to directed fishing for pollock. For Chinook salmon, the Chinook Salmon Savings Areas were established under BSAI Amendment 21b and revised under BSAI Amendment 58. These areas close to pollock trawling if 29,000 Chinook salmon are taken. The timing of the closure depends upon when the limit was reached. Amendment 82 further modified the areas to establish a separate Aleutian Islands subarea Chinook PSC limit of 700 fish, the attainment of which by the Aleutian Islands pollock fishery closes the area that is located in the Aleutian Islands (Area 1). For nonChinook salmon bycatch, the Chum Salmon Savings Area was established in 1994, by emergency rule, and then formalized under Amendment 35 in 1995. This area is closed to all trawling from August 1 through August 31. Additionally, if 42,000 nonChinook salmon are caught in the Catcher Vessel Operational Area during the period August 15 through October 14, the area closes again from September 15 to October 15.



    Salmon Bycatch
    North Pacific Fishery
    Management Council
    605 West Fourth Avenue
    Suite 306
    Anchorage, AK 99501
    Phone: 907


    2712809

    Fax: 907


    2712817

    http://www.alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/npfmc
    For More Information
    FMP References
    75 FR 7228, February 18, 2010


    . Notice of availability of Amendment 91 to the FMP for Groundfish of the BSAI Management Area to manage Chinook salmon bycatch in the Bering Sea pollock fishery. Comment period

    through April 19, 2010
    John Gauvin
    Diana Stram
    Stram, D. L., and J. N. Ianelli. 2009.
    Eastern Bering Sea pollock trawl fisheries: variation in salmon bycatch
    over time and space. Pages 827


    850 in

    C. C. Krueger and C. E. Zimmerman,
    editors. Pacific salmon: ecology and management in western Alaska'
    s

    populations. American Fisheries
    Society, Symposium 70, Bethesda,
    Maryland; available on the Council’s
    website.
    28


    Salmon Bycatch

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    mortality of Chinook (#s)
    0
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    FLEXIBLE MANAGEMENT TOOLS HELP WITH SALMON AVOIDANCE
    Although the salmon closure areas are still effective in regulation, since August of 2006 the pollock fleet has been exempted from the closures, first under an exempted fishing permit, and then under Amendment 84. In 2004, information from the fishing fleet indicated that bycatch may have been exacerbated by the current regulatory closure regulations, as much higher salmon bycatch rates were reportedly encountered outside of the closure areas during closure periods. The Council considered other means to control salmon bycatch and allowed pollock cooperatives and community development quota groups participating in a binding intercooperative agreement to utilize a rolling hot spot closure system to adaptively close small areas with high salmon bycatch rates. Participants in the agreement are exempted from compliance with the regulatory savings area closures. Vessels fishing in trawl cod or flatfish target fisheries (who have very little salmon bycatch in their fisheries) are also exempt from the closures. The pollock industry is also involved with developing a salmon excluder device for trawl gear, which allows salmon to escape from the trawl net underwater, while retaining pollock. The success of such devices relies on the different swimming behaviors of pollock and salmon. Through experimental fishery permits authorized by the Council and NOAA Fisheries, various iterations have been tested, and their use by pollock skippers is increasing.


    RECENT ACTIONS
    In April 2009, the Council adopted Amendment 91, which replaced the exemption conferred under Amendment 84 with specific, hard caps for BSAI Chinook salmon bycatch. Under this amendment, the fleet as a whole can fish under a hard cap of 47,591 fish, or participate in a NMFSapproved incentive program and fish under a higher cap level of 60,000 fish. These cap limits are allocated by season and among sectors. Once a seasonal cap for a sector is reached, pollock fishing in the Bering Sea is closed for the remainder of the season for that sector. Vessels that do not choose to fish under an incentive plan agreement (IPA) would be limited to a proportion of a lower cap of 28,496 fish.


    ON THE HORIZON
    The Council is currently evaluating ways to better control bycatch of chum salmon in the BSAI, including cap threshold limits, sector specific allocations, and area closures. The Council will finalize alternatives for analysis at the June 2010 meeting. The Council is also evaluating Chinook salmon bycatch in GOA groundfish trawl fisheries. Chinook salmon are taken regularly from the start of the trawl fisheries on January 20th through early April, and also in high quantities during June/July and September/October in the pollock fishery. The Council will be reviewing a discussion paper in April 2010, and determine if further action may be needed.

    Last edited by Akbrownsfan; 07-03-2010 at 11:35. Reason: added link

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerka View Post
    270 what do you want.
    Exactly what willphish posted. That's why I said "I agree 100%".

  20. #20
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    Default then you should be happy

    Quote Originally Posted by 270ti View Post
    Exactly what willphish posted. That's why I said "I agree 100%".
    270ti then you should be happy. There are no data that are contrary to the position that the statewide resources are not sustainable and that the polluck fishery is causing any conservation issues with chinook salmon in Alaska.

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