In a six to one vote, the Alaska Board of Fisheries approved some major changes to the way setnetters fish in the Kenai.
t’s a goal of boosting the King population while giving setnetters a chance to go after an abundance of sockeye salmon in the Cook Inlet.
On Wednesday, the board adopted new regulations for setnet fishing in an attempt to help with Kenai River King salmon conservation.
Commercial setnetters would have to apply gear restrictions and shallow fishing methods as needed.
“It’s gratifying to see the public process come together, putting meaningful restrictions in place for all user groups,” said Ricky Gease, Executive Director of Kenai River Sport Fishing Association.
Gease said the new restrictions are a step in the right direction and will hopefully make up for the losses of kings during periods of low returns.
Setnetters will now have the choice of reducing the number of nets in the water or switching to a smaller mesh that doesn’t drop as deep as a bigger mesh does.