Friday, April 28, 2023

Bristol Bay setnet election in sight

Bristol Bay setnetters will vote in September on whether to join the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association.

So says the BBRSDA's new annual report (PDF Page 15).

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

The Cook Inlet conundrum

The National Marine Fisheries Service is moving to establish federal management of salmon fisheries in the federal waters of Upper Cook Inlet.

This is the latest twist in a long and contorted legal battle over Cook Inlet salmon management.

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Juneau watch

Shannon Carroll, of Trident Seafoods, is scheduled to give a presentation on "bycatch management and reduction measures."

The presentation is set for 10 a.m. Thursday before the House Special Committee on Fisheries.

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Juneau watch

Rep. Sarah Vance, R-Homer, has introduced a resolution "encouraging the Department of Fish and Game to adopt certain regulations relating to fisheries bycatch."

Sunday, April 16, 2023

Cook Inlet setnet buyback in the spotlight

The Senate Resources Committee tomorrow will consider Senate Bill 82 to establish a buyback program for eastside Cook Inlet setnet permits.

Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, R-Nikiski, is the sponsor. Here's his sponsor statement.

"The purpose of this legislation is to reduce the number of commercial setnet permits on the east side of the Cook Inlet, thereby improving profitability for remaining setnet permit holders and reducing king salmon harvest in the eastside setnet fishery," an Alaska Department of Game fiscal note says.

The hearing is scheduled to start at 3:30 p.m.

Bristol Bay salmon forfeiture

The Alaska Department of Public Safety, in a recent legislative presentation, listed the following among its successes in 2022-23.

118,000 pounds of illegally harvested salmon forfeited in Bristol Bay

Thursday, April 13, 2023

'Mistreatment of observers is unlawful'

Federal officials have posted a notice to vessel owners on preventing observer harassment.

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

Disaster in Tacoma

The U.S. Coast Guard and the National Transportation Safety Board will conduct an investigation into the cause of the fire that ravaged the Trident Seafoods factory trawler Kodiak Enterprise while moored in Tacoma, the latest incident update says. This photo, from the Washington State Department of Ecology, is cropped tight to show the extensive fire damage across the listing 262-foot vessel. Click on the image to enlarge.

Personnel file

The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is seeking candidates for communications director.

The job carries a starting salary of $117,371 to $135,584, according to the position description.

Sitka herring fishery appears done

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is signaling the Sitka Sound sac roe herring fishery is over.

"As of today, the department will no longer be assessing Sitka Sound for commercial harvest opportunity for the remainder of the 2023 season," the department says in this announcement.

Juneau watch

State Sen. Donny Olson, D-Golovin, has introduced Senate Bill 128 titled "An act temporarily closing the commercial salmon fishery in a portion of the Alaska Peninsula and Aleutian Islands."

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Trident's $400 million project

We're learning a bit more about Trident's plans for Unalaska.

A brochure posted on the City of Unalaska's website says the company "is investing $400 million to build a new seafood processing plant" at the end of Captains Bay Road.

"It will open in 2025 and requires extension of water, sewer and electric utilities," the brochure says.

The city is trying to round up $68.5 million for a three-phase effort to extend utilities and improve the craggy road.

Trident, a Seattle-based seafood processing and harvesting giant, already operates one of Alaska's largest fish plants at Akutan, about 35 miles to the east of Unalaska.

Monday, April 10, 2023

Groundfish fisheries challenged

The Association of Village Council Presidents and Tanana Chiefs Conference have sued the National Marine Fisheries Service in federal court, challenging the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands groundfish fisheries.

The 33-page lawsuit cites trawl bycatch of salmon and "rapid and unprecedented" ecosystem change.

Fish politics

Fritz Johnson and Mark Niver have won reelection to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board of directors. More details here.

Sunday, April 9, 2023

Trident factory trawler ablaze in Tacoma

A Trident Seafoods factory trawler, the Kodiak Enterprise, has caught fire while moored in Tacoma, the U.S. Coast Guard reports.

"The fire has progressed throughout the ship and was last reported approximately 100 feet from the vessel's freon tanks," the Coast Guard says.

More details in this press release.

Thursday, April 6, 2023

Alaska salmon forecast is out!

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is forecasting a statewide commercial salmon harvest of 189.4 million fish this year.

That compares to last year's total of 163.2 million.

Here's the forecast.

Monday, April 3, 2023

KRSA likes Zuray

The Kenai River Sportfishing Association is supporting legislative confirmation of Stanley Zuray for the Alaska Board of Fisheries.

Personnel file

Jamal Moss will be the next Alaska deputy regional administrator for the National Marine Fisheries Service.

"Jamal is a highly regarded scientist and leader who currently serves as deputy director of the Alaska Fisheries Science Center’s Auke Bay Laboratories, where he oversees teams of scientists and administrative professionals responsible for fisheries stock assessment, genetics, information technology, facilities management, and other functions," the agency says in a report to the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.

Saturday, April 1, 2023

Fish board appointments

Gov. Mike Dunleavy today named three people to the Alaska Board of Fisheries: Gerad Godfrey, Greg Svendsen and Mike Wood.

The governor's office provided a little background for each.

These three presumably will replace current members Mike Heimbuch, John Jensen and McKenzie Mitchell, whose terms expire on June 30.