National Fisherman

No matter how far they travel, members of the Alaska Board of Fisheries cannot seem to stop talking about Cook Inlet salmon.


NEW ORLEANS — A move by oil giant BP to have a court fire the administrator of a damage claims settlement arising from the 2010 BP oil spill was opposed Wednesday by the administrator as well as by lawyers for Gulf Coast interests claiming harm from the disaster.
Pete McAleney walked into New Meadows Lobster on the Portland waterfront 37 years ago, intending to buy lobsters for visiting in-laws. He walked out with an offer to become a partner in the business, which he would soon accept.


If measured in sheer volume of fish, the Upper Cook Inlet commercial harvest of salmon was low: preliminary Fish and Game estimates show it at about 20 percent less than the 10-year average harvest. But, when price-per-pound is factored in, the exvessel value of the 2014 harvest was high at $35 million — making it the second year in a row that Cook Inlet commercial harvesters have seen lower-than-average harvests with higher-than-average values.


The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries on Tuesday (Oct. 14) delayed "until further notice" the opening of the oyster season in a portion of the public oyster seed "in an effort to protect recently settled young oysters."


Last month at Bonneville Dam, an extraordinary coalition of Northwest tribes, government agencies and river users — including farmers, businesses and utilities — gathered to celebrate a landmark event for our region's iconic salmon.

This year's return of about 2.3 million salmon and steelhead to the Columbia River Basin shattered the modern-day record for total annual salmon returns — an abundance we haven't seen since fish counting began at the dam more than 75 years ago.

These numbers matter to the tribes, for whom salmon are a sacred "first food." They matter to the commercial and sport fishing industries that benefit from a bountiful catch. If you live in the Northwest and have ever paid an electricity bill, the numbers matter to you, too.

Read the full story at the Oregonian>>

Want to read more about salmon and dams? Click here...

Bering Sea crab and pollock stocks all appear to be on the upswing -- good news for Washington-based fishermen whose Alaska harvests are mainstays of the multibillion-dollar North Pacific seafood industry.


The Pacific Islands Fisheries Group is launching a new satellite tagging project targeting ahi or bigeye tuna off the Kona Coast. The project aims to catch, tag and release five ahi of at least 70 pounds or larger.


How is this for a fish story? According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, millions of pounds of fish caught by Russian fishermen on Russian vessels in Russian waters each year are labeled and sold in the U.S. as "Alaska pollock." Surveys have shown that consumers overwhelmingly think this means their fish is from Alaska. But it isn’t.


So far in October, average Urner Barry prices for 6-8 kilo whole, frozen H&G toothfish are at record levels up over 14 percent from 2013. Meanwhile, frozen 6 oz. toothfish portion prices are averaging $15.10 per pound this month, up about 7 percent from last year and the highest since 2012.


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Inside the Industry

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.


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.

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