Written by Leslie Taylor
Four weeks into salmon fishing restrictions, the atmosphere along the Kuskokwim River is tense. At a meeting Tuesday the stress the closures are causing was obvious, but gillnet fishing for salmon is near.
The Bethel Test fishery numbers are showing many more chum and sockeye salmon than kings in the river. That’s one signal that fishing could begin soon. At a Kuskokwim River Salmon Management Working Group meeting Tuesday, subsistence fishers met with managers to figure out when the gillnet restrictions can be relaxed.
Reports of stress along the river in some cases were extreme. Working group member Fritz Charles reported on what he’s hearing about possible violence on the river.
“They’re starting an organization as we speak. If we keep going on like this, what we’re going on, lives could be lost,” said Charles.
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NMFS has awarded 16 grants totaling more than $2.5 million as part of its Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program.
The program supports the development of technological solutions and changes in fishing practices designed to minimize bycatch and aims to to find creative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries.Read more...
Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.
Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.Read more...