Pink salmon harvest could be record number

Alaska’s preliminary commercial salmon harvest reached 186,202,000 fish on Aug. 13, leaving the preseason forecast of 178.8 million salmon in the dust, as the humpy catch alone soared to over 139 million and appeared heading for a record.

The overall harvest to date also includes 28.7 million sockeye, 15.4 million chum, 2.2 million coho, and 299,000 Chinook, compared to a forecast of 117.8 million pink, 34.2 million dog fish, 22.7 red , 3.9 million silver and 110,000 king salmon.

According to Geron Bruce, assistant director of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s Division of Commercial Fisheries, it looks like Alaska is heading toward a record season for pink salmon, exceeding the 2005 record of 161 million humpies.

Bruce noted that harvesters in Prince William Sound have been catching humpies at the rate of 3 million a day and something similar in Southeast Alaska fisheries, and said if the harvests continue at this rate, that should put the commercial harvest of pinks at a new record high.
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