No buyer means no Kuskokwim salmon season

BETHEL – For the first time since 1960, for as long as the state has managed fisheries, a season’s worth of salmon will travel up rivers in the Kuskokwim Delta this year with no opportunity for local residents to catch them commercially.

With no fish buyer signed up for the Kuskokwim region, the usual infusion of millions of dollars into this part of job-poor Southwestern Alaska isn’t happening.

Nearly 450,000 salmon of various types have been caught on average commercially in recent years.

Not this year. The state says those unharvested fish could overload spawning grounds and hurt future runs.

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About the author

Jessica Hathaway

Jessica Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman. She has been covering the fishing industry for 13 years, serves on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute’s Communications Committee and is a National Fisheries Conservation Center board member.

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