Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Disaster declarations for Gulf cod, Chignik sockeye

The U.S. Department of Commerce today announced a raft of disaster declarations in multiple states.

Julie Speegle, spokeswoman for the National Marine Fisheries Service in Juneau, tells us the declarations include the 2018 Gulf of Alaska Pacific cod fishery and the 2018 Chignik sockeye salmon fishery.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

200-million milestone

Late-season scratch fishing has succeeded in pushing the statewide commercial salmon harvest above 200 million fish.

This is the eighth year Alaska has reached the 200-million milestone. The previous years were:

2013     280.3 million
2015     265.2 million
2017     222.8 million
2005     221.2 million
1999     216.5 million
1995     216.0 million
2007     212.6 million

Congressional hearing set on fishery disasters

Details in this press release.

Bristol Bay's record-setting season

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has posted a summary of the Bristol Bay salmon season, and the numbers are impressive.

The preliminary ex-vessel value of $306.6 million for all species "ranks first in the history of the fishery," the summary says.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Man overboard in Bristol Bay identified

This item appears in the September issue of Pacific Fishing magazine:

Bristol Bay tragedy: Last month, this magazine reported a crewman had been lost overboard from the fishing vessel Pail Rider.

Now we have additional details, including the crewman's name: James "Jamie" Van Elliott, 36, of Stonewall, Louisiana.

"Jamie Elliott, a salmon fisherman, went to his heavenly home due to a tragic accident while fishing in Alaska on July 1," said an obituary published in the Shreveport Times. "Anyone that knew him knew how much he loved to fish, and he referred to the Bering Sea as his 'happy place.'"

An extensive search involving the U.S. Coast Guard and other fishing boats ensued after the man overboard report. But searchers couldn't find him. The Coast Guard said the man wasn't wearing a life jacket.

Elliott's body was finally located on July 6, the Alaska State Troopers tell us.

"His body was found in Nushagak Bay near Clarks Point in the general location where he fell overboard," an agency spokesman said. "The body was found and recovered by another fishing boat in the area."

State records list the Pail Rider's owner as Cajun Endeavors LLC, which is owned by Jonathan Danese and David Danese.

Elliott's obituary mentions "his beloved friend and captain, Jonathan Danese."

Friday, September 6, 2019

Ed Luttrell crosses the bar

We received word this week of the passing of Ed Luttrell.

He was the owner of Kinematics Marine Equipment, whose hydraulic deck gear can be found on many Alaska commercial fishing vessels.

Luttrell had quite a career in fisheries, as detailed in this obituary.