Inseason Alaska Commercial Salmon Summary

This summary provides management, harvest, and escapement information for the Alaska commercial salmon fishing season. This summary will be updated each Friday between mid-May and September. Please note, inseason harvest data published in this summary are preliminary and subject to change. For more information on the Blue Sheet, inseason summaries, and harvest timing charts, please see our Blue Sheet, Inseason Summary, and Harvest Timing Charts Overview page.


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Southeast Alaska

Troll Fishery

Regional power troll coho salmon catch rates for the current week are 46 fish/day, with the highest catch rates in the Northern Inside area at 70 fish/day. For harvest through September 18, the seasonal average weight of coho salmon at 6.2 lbs. is below the 2018 average of 6.9 lbs., but is equivalent to the 5-year and 10-year averages of 6.2 lbs. The average price for the season is $2.03/lb. and the cumulative catch since July 1 is 924,000 coho salmon. A news release concerning the assessment of an extension of the troll season was issued on September 16. Fishing in all waters of the region, except for waters closed by regulation and areas of high king salmon abundance, was extended through September 30. The extension is being implemented based on projections by the department that wild Southeast Alaska/Yakutat coho salmon escapement goals will be met after considering harvest and effort.

Troll effort targeting enhanced chum salmon returning to the Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association (NSRAA) release sites in Crawfish Inlet and Deep Inlet has wrapped up for the season. Based on fish tickets received through September 18, the cumulative seasonal harvest and effort for Crawfish Inlet is 189,000 chum salmon by 125 permits. The cumulative seasonal harvest and effort in the Sitka Sound area is 32,300 chum salmon caught by 100 permits. The chum salmon seasonal average weight is 7.7 lbs. for Crawfish Inlet and 7.5 lbs. for Sitka Sound. The average price is $0.64/lb. for these areas.

In the troll fishery news release dated August 28, the department announced that a third Chinook salmon retention period of the general summer commercial troll season will begin at 12:01 a.m., September 1 to target the approximately 1,200 treaty Chinook salmon remaining on the annual troll allocation. The retention period continued for 10 days, from September 1 through 11:59 p.m., September 10. Based on the number of Chinook salmon remaining on the annual troll allocation and the number of permits actively fishing, a total of two Chinook salmon per permit were allocated during the 10-day fishery. To date, an estimated 653 Chinook salmon were harvested during the "limited harvest" retention period.

The 2019–2020 winter troll fishery will open according to regulation at 12:01 a.m., October 11, 2019. The 2019–2020 Winter Troll Fishery Management Plan will be available by early October in all ADF&G area offices and on the troll fishery website.

The 2019 Summer Troll Fishery Management Plan (PDF 3,403 MB) is available online and in area offices.

Purse Seine Fishery

The 2019 total enhanced summer chum salmon run was expected to eclipse 17 million fish, but returns have been lower than expected throughout Southeast Alaska. Several terminal harvest areas have been closed or were never opened due to broodstock concerns or to meet cost recovery obligations. Common property purse seine chum salmon harvest in THAs to date was reported to be 2.3 million fish. This includes purse seine harvest from Crawfish Inlet.

The 2019 Southeast Alaska pink salmon harvest forecast was predicted to be weak with a point estimate of 18 million fish. The purse seine pink salmon harvest through August 26 was estimated to be 18.2 million fish. The total pink salmon harvest in all fisheries is estimated to be 19.2 million fish.

The pink salmon return to northern Southeast has been poorer than expected and most of the northern southeast inside seine areas remain closed for the season. Most of the pink salmon harvest occurred in southern southeast. Directed pink salmon fisheries ceased after a final 39-hr opening on August 28 and 29. The Department has shifted efforts from pink salmon to fall chum salmon. On September 1, a 12-hour opening occurred in Chomdeley Sound, Security Bay, and Crawfish Inlet. Another 12-hour opening occurred later in the week on September 5 in Security Bay, Crawfish Inlet and West Crawfish Inlet. The Department will continue to monitor fall chum salmon returns in Chomley Sound, Security Bay, Port Camden and Excursion Inlet.

All Chinook salmon harvested in the Deep Inlet THA must be retained and may be sold. For all other fishing areas (including the Kendrick Bay THA), Chinook salmon 28 inches or greater in length may NOT be retained and Chinook salmon less than 28 inches may be retained but not sold.

Drift Gillnet Fishery

For more information please see the 2019 Southeast Alaska Drift Gillnet Fishery Management Plan (PDF 556 kB)

Tree Point/Section 1-B

The Section 1-B drift gillnet fishery was open for four days starting on Sunday, September 15. In comparison to the 10-year average, harvest of all salmon species was below average. The effort level of 25 vessels was below the 10-year average of 36 vessels. The estimated weekly harvest was 6,000 coho salmon, and 1,000 chum salmon. Section 1-B is currently being managed based on the strength of returning wild stock coho and fall chum salmon. Section 1-B will be open four days in statistical week 39 beginning at 12:01 p.m., Sunday, September 22.

For further details concerning this fishery, the 2019 Southeast Alaska Drift Gillnet Fishery Management Plan (PDF 556 kB) which is also available in area offices.

Stikine and Prince of Wales/Districts 6 and 8

Gillnet fisheries in District 6 and District 8 were managed based on wild coho salmon abundance during statistical week 38. Both districts opened for three days beginning Sunday, September 15. Wild coho salmon harvest rates in District 6 were just below average with below average effort. Wild coho salmon harvest rates and participation were well below average in District 8. The hatchery component is expected to make up less than half of the harvest this week based on historical timing. The historical peak for wild coho salmon stocks returning to systems in Districts 6 and 8 occurs during the first half of September and steadily decrease in the latter part of the month when the hatchery component typically peaks; timing is likely past peak for the wild component. Although indicators are pointing towards a slightly weaker than average return, effort is expected to be below average. Both districts will open for three days in statistical week 39 starting September 22.

Taku-Snettisham/Section 11-B

A below average sized fleet harvested an average number of coho salmon in District 11 this week (statistical week 38). The fish continue to move through the district in pulses with good sets intermixed with water hauls. The best catches continue to be near Point Bishop where enhanced Douglas Island Pink and Chum Inc. (DIPAC) coho salmon headed for Gastineau Channel mill and get washed into the open area with the tides. With catch rates holding up over the course of the opening and continuing good inriver indicators from the Taku River, a 24-hour extension was granted providing for a total five days of fishing opportunity this week.

The current Taku River coho salmon terminal run size projection decreased slightly from last week providing an allowable catch (AC) of slightly less than 15,000 Canada-origin fish for the U.S. under terms of the Pacific Salmon Treaty. With the current estimate of above border coho salmon in the District 11 harvest about two thirds of the available AC, continuing good inriver abundance indicators in both the fish wheels and the Canadian fishery, and a diminishing fleet as boats quit for the season or move on to fall fisheries, conservation concerns in District 11 are minimal.

Section 11-B will open for five days next week allowing the anticipated small fleet opportunity to choose their weather and tides.

Lynn Canal/District 15

District 15 opened on September 15 for three days in waters south of Glacier Point in Chilkat Inlet, and south of the White Rock line in Lutak Inlet (Section 15-A). In Section 15-C, all waters were open for three days, except for William Henry and Berner's bays.

The below-average fleet size of 50 boats encountered above average catch rates of chum salmon in Section 15-A and above average catch rates of coho salmon in Section 15-C the first day of the openers. Catches dropped the second day, then gale force winds in the canal forced the fleet off the fishing grounds on day three. Approximately 7,000 coho salmon, 10,000 chum salmon, and a handful of sockeye salmon were harvested this week, below the 10-year average.

The Chilkoot River weir has been removed for the season with a total escapement count of 140,000 sockeye salmon, which exceeded the upper bound of the escapement goal range. Chilkat Lake sockeye salmon escapement estimate of approximately 118,000 fish is within the escapement goal range. The Chilkat River fish wheels are a rough index of coho and chum salmon abundance. Coho salmon catches are on track for reaching the upper bound of the escapement goal range and chum salmon catch data indicates escapement is within the escapement goal range. Preliminary mark-recapture data for Chilkat River Chinook salmon estimates an escapement of about 1,900 large fish, within the escapement goal range of 1,750 to 3,500 fish for the first time in three years.

Next week (statistical week 39), Section 15-A will open for three days south of Letnikof Cove Point and south of Mud Bay. In Section 15-C, all waters will be open for three days, with the exception of Berners and William Henry Bays.

Yakutat Area Set Gillnet Fishery

The Alsek River, East River, Akwe River, Yakutat Bay, Dangerous River, remainder of the Yakutat District, and the Yakataga District (including the Kaliakh River and Seal River) opened for 3 days this week. The Tsiu River was opened for 2 days. The Situk-Ahrnklin Inlet and Manby Outside Waters opened for 4 days.

The Alsek River, Dangerous River, Yakutat Bay, Manby Inside Waters were not fished. The harvest for the respective areas is as follows. In the Situk-Ahrnklin Inlet, 55 permits harvested 14,593 coho salmon. For Manby Outside Waters, East River, and Kaliakh River, harvest information is confidential. Kaliakh River harvest information is not complete for this statistical week.

Escapement monitoring completed for statistical week 38 in the Yakutat area. In the Situk River approximately 10,381 coho salmon were observed. This is above the upper end of the coho salmon escapement goal (9,800 fish). Tawah Creek was also surveyed and 652 coho salmon were observed in the system.

The East River, Alsek River, Akwe River, Yakutat Bay, Dangerous River, remainder of the district, and the Yakataga District (including the Kaliakh River and Seal River) will have 3 days of fishing in statistical week 39. The Situk-Ahrnklin Inlet, Manby Outside Waters and Manby Inside Waters will have 3 days of fishing. The Tsiu River will have 2 days of fishing. The Italio River will open by emergency order when adequate levels of escapement can be documented.

Terminal Harvest Area (THA) Fisheries

Terminal Harvest Area (THA) gillnet fisheries occur in Nakat Inlet, Neets Bay, Anita Bay, Deep Inlet, and Boat Harbor. THA seine fisheries occur in Neets Bay, Kendrick Bay, Anita Bay, Deep Inlet, and Hidden Falls.

Nakat Inlet THA

The forecasted return for Nakat Inlet is 254,500 summer chum salmon and 197,100 fall chum salmon. Nakat Inlet opened to the harvest of salmon by drift gillnet and troll gear on Saturday, June 1.

The Nakat Inlet summer chum salmon harvest was 126,000 fish or 49% of the summer chum salmon forecast. This total includes 38,000 summer chum salmon harvested by drift gillnet gear, 8,000 chum salmon harvested by purse seine gear in the traditional fishery, and 80,000 chum salmon harvested in the THA. The Nakat Inlet fall chum harvest through statistical week 38 is 64,000 chum salmon or 32% of the fall chum salmon forecast. This total includes 47,000 fall chum salmon harvested by drift gillnet gear, 8,000 fall chum salmon harvested by purse seine gear in the traditional fishery, and 9,000 chum salmon harvested in the THA.

For further information please refer to the 2019 Southeast Alaska Drift Gillnet Fishery Management Plan (PDF 556 kB) and for updates on Southern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association (SSRAA) contributions visit the SSRAA website external site link.

Neets Bay THA

The Neets Bay forecasted return is 1,911,400 summer chum, 345,100 fall chum, 16,200 Chinook, and 126,900 coho salmon. Neets Bay opened to the harvest of salmon by troll gear on Saturday June 15, and by rotational fishery between drift gillnet and purse seine on Saturday, July 6.

The harvest of summer chum salmon was 154,500 fish. In the traditional fishery 125,000 chum salmon were harvested by purse seine gear and 23,000 chum salmon were harvested by drift gillnet gear. Inside the THA 1,000 chum salmon were harvested by purse seine and 500 chum salmon were harvested by drift gillnet gear. The harvest of fall chum salmon through statistical week 38 is 13,000 fish, with 3,000 fish harvested by drift gillnet and 10,000 fish harvested by purse seine. The harvest of Chinook salmon in the Neets Bay THA was 6,000 salmon by purse seine gear and 3,000 salmon by drift gillnet gear.

For further information please refer to ADF&G news releases for Neets Bay and for updates on SSRAA contributions visit the SSRAA website external site link.

Kendrick Bay THA

The forecasted return for Kendrick Bay is 1,031,700 summer chum salmon. Kendrick Bay opened to the harvest of salmon by purse seine gear on Saturday, June 15.

The Kendrick Bay harvest was 330,000 chum salmon. This total includes 221,000 chum salmon harvested by purse seine gear, 26,000 chum salmon harvested by drift gillnet gear in the traditional fishery, and 83,000 chum salmon harvested inside the THA.

For further information please refer to the 2019 Southeast Alaska Drift Gillnet Fishery Management Plan (PDF 556 kB) and for updates on SSRAA contributions visit the SSRAA website external site link.

Caroll Inlet THA

The forecasted return for Carroll Inlet is 8,000 Chinook salmon. The Carroll Inlet THA opened to the harvest of salmon by all gear groups on Saturday, June 1, and the rotational fishery between purse seine and drift gillnet through Sunday, June 30 at which time the Carroll Inlet THA closed.

The harvest of Chinook salmon in the Carroll Inlet THA was 1,000 Chinook salmon by purse seine gear and 500 Chinook salmon by drift gillnet gear.

For further information please refer to ADF&G news releases for Carroll Inlet and for updates on SSRAA contributions visit the SSRAA website external site link.

Anita Bay THA

The 2019 Anita Bay THA harvest to date is 4,000 Chinook, 46,000 chum, and 3,700 coho salmon by gillnet gear, 1,700 Chinook, 77,000 chum, and 200 coho salmon by purse seine gear, and 200 Chinook, 100 chum, and 200 coho salmon by troll gear within the THA.

For additional information, please refer to the to the ADF&G News Releases webpage.

For further information and updates on SSRAA contributions and updates visit the SSRAA website external site link.

Deep Inlet THA

The Deep Inlet THA opened on June 2 for rotational fisheries. Seine openings will occur on Sunday, Thursday, and Friday, and gillnet openings will occur on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of each week. Forecasted runs for Deep Inlet THA and Medvejie Hatchery includes 2,144,000 chum salmon, 35,300 Chinook salmon, and 78,000 coho salmon. This season, 100,000 chum salmon are needed for broodstock. The Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association (NSRAA) does not anticipate cost recovery operations this season in the Deep Inlet THA.

Seine harvest through September 20 is 2,400 Chinook salmon and 740,000 chum salmon; gillnet harvest through September 20 is 4,000 Chinook salmon and 421,000 chum salmon.

Hidden Falls THA

Openings in the Hidden Falls THA occurred on June 16, 20, 23, 27 and August 8-9. Chum salmon broodstock collection within the Hidden Falls THA is complete. Seine harvest through June 27 is 300 Chinook salmon and 13,000 chum salmon. Harvest from the August 8–9 period is confidential.

Crawfish Inlet THA

There have been 12 common property openings in the Crawfish Inlet THA since August 4. Harvest from these openings is approximately 1,675,000 chum salmon. The last opening for the Crawfish Inlet THA is schedule for September 26.

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Prince William Sound (PWS)

Copper River and PWS Drift Gillnet

The Copper River District and Bering River District remain closed to commercial salmon fishing; the Eshamy District is closed for the season. The Coghill District was open for an 84-hour period on Thursday, September 12 and a 60-hour period on Monday, September 16.

Escapement monitoring at the Miles Lake Sonar Station for sockeye and Chinook salmon returns to the Copper River started on May 8 and ended on July 28. A total of 1,023,499 salmon were enumerated at the sonar site versus a minimum anticipated cumulative target of 588,191 salmon. The Coghill River weir was operational effective 12:45 p.m. Wednesday, June 19 and ceased operation for the season on July 28. A total of 32,247 sockeye salmon were enumerated at the Coghill River weir versus a minimum cumulative target of 19,757 fish.

For the week ending September 21, the Bering River District survey count was 7,725 coho salmon versus an anticipated range of 16,908 – 35,401 fish.

The 2019 cumulative coho salmon harvest through September 18 is approximately 77,700 fish versus the recent 10-year average of 229,100 coho salmon harvested by this date. For the week ending September 21, the Bering River District survey count was 2,525 coho salmon versus an anticipated range of 5,041 – 12,797 fish.

The Coghill District drift gillnet participation decreased this past week to less than 50 boats to due decreased coho salmon abundance near the Wally Noerenberg Hatchery (WNH) and declining processor participation.

The 2019 Copper River District cumulative coho salmon harvest through September 3 is approximately 77,000 including the 30,100 coho salmon harvested for the fishing period that closed September 3. This cumulative harvest is 62,000 fish below the recent 10-year average of 139,000 coho salmon harvested by this date.

Concerning the Coghill District, a total run of 1.99 million WNH chum salmon are projected to return to the hatchery. Historical harvest timing for these chum salmon is from June 1 – July 27. A total of 443,000 Coghill Lake sockeye salmon are projected to be available for common property harvest. The harvest timing for these fish is from June 1 – August 1. Total harvest from the Coghill District fishing period ending September 15 was 16,100 coho salmon with 166 deliveries reported. Total harvest from the Coghill District fishing period ending September 18 was 3,500 coho salmon with 64 deliveries reported.

A total of 1.37 million Main Bay Hatchery (MBH) sockeye salmon are anticipated to be available for common property harvest in the Eshamy District. The historical harvest timing for these sockeye salmon is from June 1 – August 1. Fewer than 3 deliveries were reported for the fishing period ending on Tuesday, September 3.

A total of 250,000 chum salmon were anticipated to return to Port Chalmers Subdistrict in the Montague District. The historical harvest timing for these chum salmon is from June 1 – July 27. The commercial drift gillnet season in Montague District ended on July 31. Cumulative chum salmon harvest for the drift gillnet season was 1.52 million fish, close to six times the forecast, and an all-time high for this remote release fishery.

The Copper River District and Bering River District switched to coho salmon management on August 12. The standard management strategy for coho salmon is one or two 24-hour periods per week depending on escapement and harvest levels. Aerial surveys to date are well below the anticipated range and will result in a more conservative management approach until escapement indices improve.

Prince William Sound Purse Seine

Waters of the Eastern, Northern, Coghill, Northwestern, Montague, Southeastern, and Southwestern districts were open to commercial seine fishing on August 30; August 31, September 1, September 2, September 3, September 4, and September 5.

Prince William Sound Aquaculture Corporation (PWSAC) wild stock pink salmon run entry was delayed this year, likely due to the abnormally warm weather and drought conditions in Prince William Sound (PWS). However, the runs have developed quickly over the past week and are highly compressed, resulting in 31.5 million pink salmon harvested since August 8. In 1991, a year comparable to 2019, both PWSAC and wild stock runs developed late, and 22.4 million pink salmon were harvested between August 10 and August 30.

Drought conditions have led to stream escapements that are below average for the date within the Eastern, Southeastern, Southwestern, and Montague districts. Salmon needed for stream escapement are staging within the stream mouths and bays as they await colder temperatures and sufficient stream flows.

An estimated 18,031 million pink salmon were harvested in PWS on September 5. The cumulative PWS pink salmon harvest through September 5 is estimated at a total of 44.2 million common property fish (CPF) and 4.1 million cost recovery fish, for a total of 48.3 million fish. The 5-year odd-year average (2009–2017) cumulative PWS pink salmon harvest (CPF and cost recovery fish) through September 6 is 57.9 million fish.

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Bristol Bay

Togiak District

There is little effort in the Togiak District, the tower counts for sockeye salmon are complete, and the season is basically over. The district has seen a record harvest, which exceeded 1,000,000 sockeye salmon for the first time. Coho salmon are quickly becoming the predominant fish.

Nushagak District

The season in the Nushagak District is coming to a close.

Naknek-Kvichak District

The summary for statistical week 30 (below) was the last Blue Sheet update for the Naknek-Kvichak District.

Harvest on July 24 was 38,000 sockeye salmon for a cumulative 11.4 million fish harvested this season. The Naknek River tower operated through July 23 and final cumulative escapement was 2,911,470 fish, which is above the escapement goal range. The Alagnak Tower operated through July 24 and final cumulative escapement was 820,458 fish, which is above the lower bound Sustainable Escapement Goal (SEG). July 25 will be Kvichak Tower's last day of counting and cumulative escapement through July 24 was 2,360,382 fish, which is within the escapement goal range.

Egegik District

Counting tower operations in the Egegik District ended on July 23. Sockeye salmon escapement for the season is 2.3 million fish. Cumulative harvest through August 7, is 14.9 million sockeye salmon. Commercial fishing is currently on the fall schedule.

Ugashik District

Counting tower operations ended on July 28. Sockeye salmon escapement for the season is 1.5 million fish. Cumulative harvest through August 7, is 1 million sockeye salmon. Commercial fishing is currently on the fall schedule.

Inseason Harvest Information

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Cook Inlet:

Upper Cook Inlet (UCI)

There are several commercial fisheries underway in Upper Cook Inlet:

  1. Northern District Set Gillnet fishery; 12-hour periods
    1. Mondays and Thursdays
      1. Area east of Susitna River and Fire Island are closed for coho salmon conservation
  2. Western, Kustatan, Chinitna Bay, and Kalgin Island Subdistrict Set Gillnet fisheries; 12-hour periods
    1. Mondays and Thursdays
  3. Chinitna Bay Subdistrict Set Gillnet fishery; 12-hour periods
    1. Tuesday and Fridays
  4. Central District Drift Gillnet fishery; 12-hour periods
    1. Drift Gillnet Areas 3 and 4; Mondays and Thursdays
    2. Chinitna Bay Subdistrict; Tuesdays and Fridays

The Kenai, Kasilof, Judd Lake, Larsen Lake, Chelatna Lake, and Fish Creek sockeye salmon assessment projects are all complete for the 2019 season. The Kenai, Kasilof, Judd Lake and Fish Creek projects all exceeded the upper end of the sockeye salmon goals. The Larsen Lake project did not meet the lower end of the sockeye salmon goal. The Chelatna Lake project achieved the sockeye salmon goal.

Participation in all fisheries has steadily declined which is typical for the end of the season. UCI staff anticipates an Emergency Order to end the season after the coming week.

The drift gillnet fishery was open for two regular periods and two additional periods in Chinitna Bay. On September 16 and 19, drifters fished in Drift Gillnet Area 3 and Drift Gillnet Area 4. On September 17 and September 20, drifters fished in Chinitna Bay. The total harvest of 758,451 sockeye salmon remains far below both the 5 and 10-year average harvests.

The Western Subdistrict Set Gillnet Fishery was open September 16 and 19 for 12-hour regular periods. Total harvest for the season 75 king salmon and 58,441 sockeye salmon.

The Northern Subdistrict set gillnet fishery has harvested 72,370 sockeye salmon, 50,817 coho salmon and 197 king salmon since its June 27 opener.

The Kalgin Island Subdistrict set gillnet fishery has harvested 51,837 sockeye salmon since June 27.

On August 19, the Division of Sport Fish released two Emergency Orders (2-SS-2-49-19 and 2-SS-2-50-19) prohibiting sport fishing for coho salmon in the Deshka and Little Susitna rivers effective 12:01 a.m., August 21. In response, Upper Cook Inlet Commercial Fishing Announcement No. 37 closed commercial salmon fishing with set gillnets in that portion of the General Subdistrict of the Northern District east of the Susitna River, including Fire Island, from 7:00 a.m. on Thursday, August 29, 2019 until further notice.

Lower Cook Inlet (LCI)

Cost recovery of returning Trail Lakes Hatchery sockeye salmon from the Bear Lake release began on May 23 and has ended. Commercial harvest of remaining sockeye salmon returning to Resurrection Bay release sites began on Monday, June 24 and concluded on July 19 at 10 p.m. Commercial set gillnet harvest began in the Southern District of Lower Cook Inlet on Monday, June 3 with commercial purse seine opening for commercial common property harvest in Kamishak Bay having begun on June 1 and in portions of the Southern District on Monday, June 17. Portions of the Outer District opened on July 15. Areas in the East Nuka Subdistrict near Delight Lake opened to commercial purse seine harvest on July 22. The south shore of Port Dick opened on Monday, August 12 and an additional opening occurred in that area on Friday, August 16. Beginning Tuesday, August 20, both north and south shores of Port Dick opened on a daily schedule of 16-hour fishing periods.

Approximately 24,044 sockeye salmon have been counted on the English Bay River weir. This is above the sustainable escapement goal (SEG) for this system (6,000-13,500 fish) and is the highest count for this facility since ADF&G reestablished the weir in 1993. The U.S. Forest Service operated a weir at this location in most years from 1927-1941. During its operation, counts exceeded 24,044 fish for only three years.

Approximately 17,410 sockeye salmon have been counted at the Delight Lake weir through July 30. This is in the upper end of the SEG for this system (7,500-17,650 fish).

As of August 9, 12,070 sockeye salmon have been counted at the Chenik video weir in the Kamishak Bay District. This is above the midpoint of the SEG for this system (2,900-13,700 fish).

There have been 2,901 sockeye salmon enumerated at the Mikfik video weir as of July 7. Video data from this facility has not been completely processed. The SEG for this system is 3,400-11,000 fish.

Participation levels for Lower Cook Inlet commercial set gillnet and purse seine fisheries are anticipated to remain similar to recent years.

The first 48-hour commercial set gillnet fishing period in the Southern District began on Monday, June 3. Recent harvest from this fishery is shown below (Table) including last year's harvest and previous 5-year harvest averages.

Table: Southern District set gillnet harvests: current year, last year, and previous 5-year average
Sockeye Coho Pink Chum
Dates 5-yr avg 2018 2019 5-yr avg 2018 2019 5-yr avg 2018 2019 5-yr avg 2018 2019
6/3 – 6/5 1,289 101 677 0 0 0 0 0 0 33 1 15
6/6-6/8 1,158 177 601 0  0  0 13 0 0 33 1 16
6/10-6/12 1,417 190 833 1  0  0 0 0 0 85 9 13
6/13-6/15 1,289 377 800 1  0  0 2 0 0 207 30 11
6/17-6/19 1,219 367 1,352 0  0  0 0 0 1 161 63 48
6/20-6/22 1,782 507 1,467 9 46  0 60 2 19 274 182 86
6/24-6/26 1,480 667 1,607 27  0  0 34 9 170 258 220 176
6/276/29 1,954 998 1,469 7 118 50 301 321 308 243
7/1-7/3 1,834 1,548 1,892 17 1  0 569 205 415 451 296 143
7/4-7/6 2,181 1,711 1,594 58 13 19 855 698 255 471 478 261
7/8-7/10 2,935 907 1,747 198 20 286 1,352 896 691 546 329 279
7/11-7/13 2,424 1,577 2,042 292 465 695 1,944 2,424 766 555 518 565
7/15-7/17 2,904 1,072 1,378 389 205 125 2,277 2,621 228 584 267 183
7/18-7/20 2,706 1,594 1,491 463 611 201 2,419 4,634 248 647 460 317
7/22-7/24 1,477 1,275 1,596 206 510 215 2,091 6,404 288 404 364 200
7/25-7/27 1,273 708 2,967 283 334 286 1,456 9,119 589 231 203 398
7/29-7/31 848 426 2,038 244 155 274 1,238 5,999 697 153 166 380
8/1-8/3 623 401 1,084 285 174 74 1,502 10,664 342 159 148 131
8/5-8/7 819 168 1,481 445 48 104 1,359 4,649 478 151 74 134
8/8-8/10 743 136 640 156 230 113 1,128 5,203 181 190 66 87
8/12-8/14 560 112 -- 254 105 -- 1,045 1,365 -- 116 20 --
8/15-8/17 217 121 -- 64 121 -- 660 1,518 -- 77 29 --
Totals 33,132 15,140 28,756 3,399 3,038 2,392 20,122 56,460 5,669 6,107 4,232 3,686

Note: Harvest from period 21 and 22 are confidential due to fewer than 3 permit holders reporting deliveries.

Preliminary numbers indicate that approximately 1.7 million pink salmon have been delivered from the Outer District as of August 31. This compares to a cumulative harvest of 1.2 million pink salmon by this date in 2017, the parent year for this return.

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Kodiak

Kodiak

The Outer Karluk Section of the Southwest Kodiak District, the Central and North Cape sections of the Northwest Kodiak District, and the Southwest Afognak Section of the Afognak District are open until further notice targeting late-run Karluk sockeye salmon.

The majority of the Afognak District, the Seven Rivers, Two-Headed and Sitkalidak sections of the Eastside Kodiak District, the Humpy-Deadman Section of the Alitak District, the Inner Bay Section of the Northwest Kodiak District, and the Outer Ayakulik Section of the Southwest Kodiak District will open to commercial salmon fishing beginning Saturday September 21 targeting local coho salmon.

The Cape Alitak, Alitak Bay, Moser Bay, and Olga Bay sections of the Alitak District will open to commercial salmon fishing beginning Saturday, September 21 targeting late-run Upper Station sockeye salmon.

In the Southwest Kodiak District, the cumulative Karluk River late-run sockeye salmon escapement was 321,039 fish, which is within the desired escapement range for this date. The overall Karluk sockeye salmon escapement is currently 507,549 fish.

The Ayakulik weir was pulled on August 28. The cumulative Ayakulik River late-run sockeye salmon escapement through August 28 was 117,209 fish, which above the desired escapement range for this date. The final Ayakulik sockeye salmon escapement was 279,639 fish.

In the Alitak District, the cumulative Upper Station late-run sockeye salmon escapement was 165,146 fish, which is within the desired escapement range for this date. The overall Upper Station sockeye salmon escapement is currently 214,663 fish. The cumulative Frazer sockeye salmon escapement through August 15 is 169,627 fish, which is within the desired escapement range for this date.

In the Afognak District, the cumulative Afognak Lake (Litnik) sockeye salmon escapement was 26,817 fish, which is within the desired escapement range.

In the Northeast Kodiak District, the cumulative Buskin Lake sockeye salmon escapement was 12,296 fish, which is above the desired escapement range for this date.

In the Eastside Kodiak District, the cumulative Pasagshak River sockeye salmon escapement was 4,537 fish, which is within the desired escapement range.

In the Eastside Kodiak District, the cumulative Saltery River sockeye salmon escapement was 22,183 fish, which is above the desired escapement for this date.

Approximately 175 seiners and 145 set gillnetters are participating in commercial fishery.

Sockeye salmon harvest through September 20 is approximately 2,095,894 fish which is average. Approximately 516,020 chum salmon have been harvested through September 20 which is below average for this date. Pink salmon harvest through September 20 is 32,828,898 fish which is above average for this date. The coho salmon harvest through September 20 is 379,790 fish which is average for this date.

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Alaska Peninsula

North Peninsula

Fish processing ceased for the season on September 14 and this will be the last update for the season.

The Nelson River weir was removed on July 28. The season escapement was approximately 120,000 sockeye salmon, meeting the escapement goal of 97,000-219,000 fish. The Chinook salmon escapement at the Nelson River weir is over 11,000 fish exceeding the upper goal of 5,000 fish and is one of the best escapements on record. The Sandy River weir was pulled on July 24. The sockeye salmon escapement through the weir was 71,000 fish, meeting the escapement goal of 34,000-74,000 sockeye salmon. Escapement on the Ilnik River has exceeded the upper escapement goal of 60,000 sockeye salmon. The weir was pulled on July 18 with 75,000 sockeye salmon passing the weir this season. The early run Bear River escapement goal (176,000-293,000 sockeye salmon) was met by July 31, with a total of 295,000 sockeye salmon, but overall the run was weaker than expected. The late run at Bear River started on August 1, and the weir was removed on August 25. A total of 176,000 sockeye salmon passed the weir this season, exceeding the escapement goal (87,000-165,000 fish). Bear River has been open to the stream terminus since mid-August. The total catch in the Bear River, Three Hills, Ilnik, and Outer Port Heiden sections is approximately 2.28 million sockeye salmon which is slightly below the 2018 harvest but is similar to the 10-year average harvest. In the Outer Port Heiden Section, 519,000 sockeye salmon were harvested which is similar to the 10- year average harvest.

The Nelson Lagoon commercial coho salmon harvest exceeded the sockeye salmon daily harvest for the first time on August 14, which is typical. The sockeye salmon catch in the Nelson Lagoon Section (91,000 fish) is well below the 10-year average of 207,000 fish.

There was a small amount of fishing effort for sockeye salmon in the Black Hills Section, and for chum salmon in the Herendeen-Moller Bay Section this year, however less than three permit holders participated in each fishery. Coho salmon surveys were conducted in Ilnik Lagoon and Nelson Lagoon as well as in other major coho salmon systems. Coho salmon runs are not as strong as they have been in recent years. On September 4, 23,000 coho salmon were observed in the Ilnik River and 24,000 coho salmon in the Nelson River. Escapement goals were met on both systems. On the Cinder River, 42,000 coho salmon were observed and 52,000 coho salmon were observed in the Meshik River system. Both escapement levels are decent with no directed harvests in 2019.

Final sockeye salmon spawning ground surveys occurred on the Meshik and Cinder river systems on July 30. A total of almost 100,000 sockeye salmon were observed in the Meshik River, which exceeds the season ending escapement goal of 48,000 to 86,000 sockeye salmon. A total of about 95,000 sockeye salmon were observed in the Cinder River system, which exceeded the season ending escapement goal of 36,000-94,000 sockeye salmon. The Chinook salmon escapement at the Nelson River weir was over 11,000 fish, exceeding the upper goal of 5,000 fish, and is one of the best escapements on record. A test fishery occurred in the Bear River section on August 2, with a second test fishery occurring on August 7. Eight boats participated in both fisheries, and a total of 70 sets were made. Approximately 9,000 sockeye salmon were harvested total.

South Peninsula

Commercial salmon fishing occurred in the waters of the South Alaska Peninsula from August 5 through August 8 and was extended until further notice in all areas except for the Southeastern District Mainland Sections of the Southeastern District. Extensions were warranted due to pink salmon and chum salmon escapement goals being met. A 131-hour commercial salmon fishing period opened in the Southeastern District Mainland on September 5 and closed on September 10. One section, the Stepovak Flats, and one statistical area, the Orzinski Bay, was excluded from the commercial salmon fishing period. Another salmon fishing period was opened in the Southeastern District Mainland for 131-hours on September 13 and will close on September 18. One section, the Stepovak Flats, and one statistical area, the Orzinski Bay, was excluded from the commercial salmon fishing period.

Despite the large pink salmon harvest, aerial surveys in June and the first two weeks of July did not indicate significant early escapement of pink salmon on the South Alaska Peninsula. Recent aerial surveys have indicated that escapement of pink salmon and chum salmon are exceeding the lower-bound goals in all districts. Escapement for pink salmon area-wide is above the lower end of the goal of 1.75 million fish at 2.28 million pink salmon in-river. Escapement for chum salmon is above the lower end of the goal of 330,400 chum salmon at 349,000 in-river.

There is one salmon enumeration weir operated in the South Alaska Peninsula Management Area, the Orzinski Weir. The Orzinski Weir was fish tight on June 12 and removed on August 8. The escapement goal range for Orzinski on August 7 was for 15,000 to 20,000 sockeye salmon; the total escapement for the season was 4,367 sockeye salmon. This is the second year in a row that the Orzinski weir did not meet its escapement goal for sockeye salmon.

Participation in the commercial salmon fishery has been decreasing in the past week, with roughly half of the daily deliveries being reported. Processing capacity is not an issue in the South Alaska Peninsula. Fishermen are either done fishing for the season or boats are switching from salmon to groundfish.

There is one management plan in the South Alaska Peninsula Management Area that has allocative ties to another area. The Southeastern District Mainland Salmon Management Plan (5 AAC 09.360) is based off the Chignik Management Area (Area L) harvest. The allocation period of the Southeastern District Mainland Salmon Management Plan ended on July 26; the area is now managed on local escapement.

As of September 12, a total of 22,961 Chinook salmon, 1,582,114 sockeye salmon, 483,544 coho salmon, 19,664,658 pink salmon, and 1,142,770 chum salmon have been harvested in the South Alaska Peninsula of Area M.

The Chinook salmon harvest is above both the 10-year average of 13,702 and the 5-year average of 20,346 fish. The sockeye salmon harvest is well below both the 10-year average of 2,168,631 fish and the 5-year average of 2,320,631 fish. The coho salmon harvest is above the 10-year average of 265,296 fish and above the 5-year average of 226,514 fish. Pink salmon harvest is above average for this time of year compared to the 10-year average of 6,333,767 fish and the 5-year average of 8,267,815, fish. The high pink salmon harvest number is largely due to the harvest of over 9 million pink salmon in June. The chum salmon harvest is above the 10-year average of 942,641 fish and the 5-year average of 887,557 fish.

The Unalaska District of the Aleutian Islands Area was opened to commercial salmon fishing for the first time since 2014. With less than three processors reporting salmon harvest from the Unalaska District of the Aleutian Islands Area, the harvest is considered confidential.

The South Alaska Peninsula Management Area no longer has any scheduled commercial salmon fishing periods. The entire area is now managed on local salmon stocks by aerial survey for the duration of the season.

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Chignik

Chignik

The entire Chignik Management Area (CMA) is open to commercial salmon fishing until 11:59 p.m. Thursday, September 14.

August 18 was the final day of weir counts for the Chignik River. The final estimate of the early sockeye salmon run is 345,918 fish and the late sockeye salmon run is estimated to be 287,745 fish, through August 18. The early run estimate fell just below the minimum escapement objectives of 350,000-450,000 fish. The late run is estimated to be within the escapement goal of 220,000-400,000 fish. A final post weir escapement estimate for the late run will be released after the commercial fishing season is complete. Daily sockeye salmon harvest appears to be average for this time of the year and it is likely that the late run is later than normal and average in strength.

Aerial surveys of the Western, Perryville, Central, and Eastern districts within the last week indicate that the chum salmon runs have peaked. Chum salmon run timing and strength appeared average this season and the areawide escapement goal of 45,000-110,000 fish will be achieved. Pink salmon escapement appears strong and fish are continuing to show in most local streams. However, a few streams in the Perryville District are behind schedule for escapement likely due to low water in the streams. Recent rains should have allowed some fish to escape upriver and the Department plans to survey these areas within the next week. Recent surveys in the Eastern and Central districts showed coho salmon are beginning to enter local streams although it is too early to gauge the run strength.

Participation in the commercial fishery is lower than average. Approximately 51 permit holders have participated to date. Due to the weak early sockeye salmon run, several permit holders have opted to participate in other salmon fisheries this year.

From June 1 until July 25 sockeye salmon harvested in the areas adjacent to the CMA are considered bound for Chignik. There was no fishing in the Cape Igvak Section of Area K (Kodiak), or in the Southeastern District Mainland (SEDM) of Area M (Alaska Peninsula) during the allocation period this season due to a weak early Chignik River sockeye salmon run.

Due to confidentiality requirements and agreements, harvest information after August 28 cannot be released. Total harvest for the CMA through August 28 is 4,360 Chinook salmon, 613,946 sockeye salmon, 219,383 coho salmon, 2,235,520 pink salmon and 153,287 chum salmon. Total season harvest is below average due to the limited fishing time early in the season, but daily harvest has been above average for this time of year.

For more information, please visit the ADF&G website for the Chignik Management Area webpage.

For News Releases detailing the specific information related to the fishery visit the News Releases webpage.

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Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim

Yukon River

The 2019 fall chum salmon run size is estimated to be approximately 910,000 fish, after adjusting for the overlap of summer chum salmon into the fall season. A fall chum salmon run size at this level is expected to provide for escapement, subsistence needs, and a limited commercial fishery. The coho salmon run, which is based on inseason assessment in combination with using late run timing, is estimated to be 183,600 fish, which is below average. This year, the coho salmon run came in late and weak.

The preliminary cumulative commercial harvest for the Lower Yukon River through August 31 is 253,864 fall chum salmon and 56,305 coho salmon. This is the 6th largest harvest of fall chum salmon and 13th largest harvest of coho salmon in the Lower Yukon River since 1961.

In the Upper Yukon River, the fall chum salmon commercial fishery is open in Subdistricts 5-B and 5-C and District 6. Commercial fishermen may use 6-inch or smaller mesh gillnets and fish wheels. Chinook salmon may not be sold. Fishing opened from August 22-28 in Subdistricts 5-B and 5-C, resulting in a harvest of 900 fall chum salmon. In District 6, commercial fishing is ongoing and 1,618 fall chum salmon and 212 coho salmon have been harvested. More commercial harvest is expected to occur in District 6 in late September when the air temperature cools down.

The sonar project near Pilot Station in the Lower Yukon River concluded for the season on August 31. The estimated passage was 1.4 million summer chum salmon, 219,500 Chinook salmon, 843,600 fall chum salmon, and 85,900 coho salmon. The mainstem sonar near Eagle has an estimated passage of 20,500 fall chum salmon. Additional Upper Yukon River assessment projects are ongoing and can be viewed on the Yukon Escapement Monitoring Inseason and Historical Data webpage.

For more information, please visit the ADF&G website for the Yukon Management Area.

Kuskokwim River

Federal management within the boundaries of the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge officially reverted to state management on July 1. The mainstem Kuskokwim River is currently open to subsistence fishing with gillnets (unrestricted mesh size) not to exceed 50 fathoms in length. Waters around the mouth of the Aniak River are open to subsistence fishing. As of August 31, the regulations set forth on May 28 regarding the closure of all lower river spawning tributaries to fishing with gillnets have been rescinded. These tributaries are open to subsistence fishing until further notice.

As of September 19, Kuskokwim River drainage weirs (Kwethluk, Kogrukluk, and George River weirs) have ceased (or will soon cease) operations due to high water events. Operations at these weirs had originally been scheduled to cease between September 20 and September 27. Data for these weirs, and those that previously ceased operations, are preliminary until post-season analyses have been completed. Preliminary run reconstruction analysis indicates the Kuskokwim River Chinook salmon drainagewide goal (65,000 to 120,000 fish) was exceeded with a spawning escapement estimate of 180,000 fish and total run estimate of 230,000 fish. All other Chinook salmon weir and aerial escapement goals have been achieved or exceeded. The sockeye salmon escapement goal at Kogrukluk River weir (4,400 to 17,000 fish) has been exceeded. Additionally, the chum salmon escapement goal at the Kogrukluk River weir (15,000 to 49,000 fish) has been exceeded. Coho salmon abundance at the Bethel Test Fishery (Operations ceased August 24) indicated a slightly later (approximately 5 days late) run timing this year. Coho salmon passage at Kwethluk River weir has surpassed the lower bound escapement goal threshold of >19,000 fish and Kogrukluk River weir has surpassed the bottom end of the escapement goal (13,000 to 28,000 fish) during the past week.

In the Kuskokwim Bay area, the Goodnews River weir, which had been operating since June 22, ceased operations as of July 31. At this site, escapement goals for Chinook salmon (1,500 to 2,900 fish), sockeye salmon (18,000 to 40,000 fish), and chum salmon (>12,000 fish) have been exceeded. Kanektok River aerial surveys have been completed and the escapement goal for Chinook salmon (3,900 to 12,000 fish) was met while sockeye salmon (15,300 to 41,000 fish) was vastly exceeded with an estimate of approximately 350,000 fish observed.

For more information, please visit the ADF&G website for the Kuskokwim Management Area

Norton Sound

Chum salmon catch was 157,000 fish and was below the forecast of 170,000 to 220,000 fish but was the third highest catch for chum salmon in the last 30 years. This year's coho salmon catch ranked fourth highest of all-time at 140,000 fish but was below the forecast of 190,000 to 240,000 fish. The 2019 price for coho salmon was the same as 2018 at $1.40/lb. The 2019 price for chum salmon ($0.50/lb.) was well below the 2018 price of $0.80/lb. Incidental catch included 1,400 king salmon, 7,000 sockeye salmon and 75,000 pink salmon. The 2019 forecasts included 0-2,000 king salmon, 3,000-5,000 sockeye salmon and 25,000 -75,000 pink salmon.

For more information, please visit the ADF&G website for the Norton Sound & Kotzebue Management Area

Kotzebue

The 2019 commercial salmon season in the Kotzebue area has ended. The 2019 harvest of 494,000 chum salmon harvested ranked 7th highest on record and fell within the Department forecast of 450,000 to 650,000 fish.

For more information, please visit the ADF&G website for the Norton Sound & Kotzebue Management Area

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