June 13, 2014
NOME — The North Pacific Fishery Management Council asked for analysis of reduced limits for chinook salmon and halibut bycatch in the Bering Sea.
The council motions on salmon and halibut bycatch over the weekend of June 7 at the Mini Convention Center in Nome asked its staff for analysis of reducing the prohibited species catch caps on those species in certain fleets, as well as looking at other regulatory efforts to reduce bycatch of those species in addition to chum salmon.
The motions also called for continued voluntary bycatch reduction from industry.
Analysis of a regulatory amendment package is the first step toward action, but it will likely take several meetings before any action is taken, and a reduction is not guaranteed. The salmon package will tentatively come back before the council for initial review in December; halibut will likely be discussed in February.