Thursday, March 31, 2022

IFQ transfer denial

The National Marine Fisheries Service is denying a COVID-related request for another season of halibut and sablefish IFQ transfer relief.

Here's the letter.

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Sizeable CDQ financing

The federal government is making $197 million in loans available to Alaska's six community development quota companies.

Icing, injuries, sinkings

For the upcoming North Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting, the U.S. Coast Guard submitted this interesting, and mostly unfortunate, list of recent search and rescue cases.

Sunday, March 27, 2022

And they're off!

The Sitka Sound herring sac roe fishery got underway yesterday with an opener lasting an hour and 15 minutes.

No word yet on harvest volume.

Thursday, March 24, 2022

‘Deadliest Catch,’ season 18

"Deadliest Catch" will get going again April 19 with a two-hour premiere.

"For the first time in 25 years, the tenacious 'Deadliest Catch' captains must search the seas for a new way to earn a living when red king crab fishing is shut down for the season," says this news release from Discovery.

New boss for NMFS

Agency veteran Jon Kurland has been named the new Alaska regional administrator for the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Sitka herring fishery to go on two-hour notice

More details in this advisory announcement from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Alaska newsman Jay Barrett crosses the bar

Here's the story. Respect for you, Jay.

And the winners are...

Here are your Southeast Alaska sablefish tag recovery drawing winners.

Friday, March 18, 2022

Congressman Don Young has died

Young's office just released this statement:

It's with heavy hearts and deep sadness that we announce Congressman Don Young (R-AK), the Dean of the House and revered champion for Alaska, passed away today while traveling home to Alaska to be with the state and people that he loved. His beloved wife Anne was by his side.

A fierce defender of Alaska since elected to Congress in 1973, nearly everything that has advanced for Alaska is a result of Don Young's tenacious work. From the Trans-Alaska pipeline, to the Ketchikan Shipyard, to the Magnuson-Stevens Act, which transformed the American fishing industry, to the numerous land exchanges he fought for, Don Young's legacy cannot be overstated.

"Every day, I try to do something for somebody and some group," Congressman Young once said. "And every day I try to learn something new. We all go into the ground the same way. The only thing we leave behind are our accomplishments."

Don Young's legacy as a fighter for the state will live on, as will his fundamental goodness and his honor. We will miss him dearly. His family, his staff, and his many friends ask Alaskans for their prayers during this difficult time.

In the coming days, we will be sharing more details about plans for a celebration of his life and his legacy.

Injured man hoisted off Bering Sea factory trawler

Here's a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard.

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Creating 'sanctuaries'

Here's an important story about how the Alaska Board of Fisheries is closing areas to commercial and sport fishing.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

No fishery for little sharks

The Board of Fisheries has voted 6-0 against a proposal to create a new spiny dogfish pot fishery in Southeast Alaska.

Sunday, March 13, 2022

The end of an era?

The Alaska Board of Fisheries is now conducting its Southeast meeting, and Deckboss is particularly interested in a pair of proposals that would revolutionize the Sitka Sound commercial sac roe herring fishery.

The proposals seek to tame the notoriously combative seine fishery by establishing equal share quotas for each of the 47 permit holders. Under this arrangement, Sitka no longer would run as a competitive fishery.

The fishermen sponsors of one of the proposals argue it's high time the fishery switched to a "safe and orderly system." They describe the mayhem sometimes seen at Sitka:

The Sitka Sound commercial sac roe fishery is one of the most hazardous fisheries in the state. Fishermen are put into small areas for even smaller amounts of time to fight over the resource. Vessels are routinely in collisions, vessels have rolled over, gear is frequently destroyed and injuries are not uncommon. Fishermen and insurance companies have frequent claims, and the state of Alaska, U.S. Coast Guard and local law enforcement are forced to spend limited and valuable resources to patrol the derby fishery.

Supporters of equal shares say most of the fishery's permit holders support the change.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is neutral on the proposals, but offers excellent comments on the key considerations.

What will the board do? Can't wait to see.

Friday, March 11, 2022

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Council picks

Gov. Mike Dunleavy has nominated two people for seats on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.

Nicole Kimball was named for a second three-year term on the council. She's a fisheries/policy analyst for the Pacific Seafood Processors Association.

Angela "Angel" Drobnica was named as a new member to the council. Drobnica is director of fisheries and government affairs for the Aleutian Pribilof Island Community Development Association.

If confirmed by the U.S. commerce secretary, Drobnica will replace one-term council member Cora Campbell, the Silver Bay Seafoods CEO and former Alaska fish and game commissioner.

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Alaska's very own submarine?

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy is urging the Navy to select an Alaska homeport for a submarine, and also reopen the Adak naval base.