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Alaska Department of Fish and Game


Fish, Amphibian, & Aquatic Plants Permits
Resource Permits

A Fish Resource Permit (FRP) is required for any activity to collect fish, shellfish, or aquatic plants that is not covered by current sport, personal use, aquatic farm, and commercial regulations. This requirement includes methods and means (i.e., gear), numbers of animals, locations, and seasons in which collection can occur. The permit may address whether or not any of the collected specimens, or the water in which they have been held, can be released back to the wild. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) only issues FRPs to organizations and individuals engaged in legitimate scientific, educational, propagative, or exhibition activities, and who meet other requirements stated in the department’s guiding policy.

Depending on your proposed activity or activities, one or more fish resource permits (FRPs) may be required. For example, you will need an FRP in order to collect or hold any fish species (legally defined as aquatic finfish, invertebrates or amphibians). Two other types of permit, called a fish transport permit (FTP) and an incubation permit, may be needed if one wishes to capture or transport fish, or acquire and hold salmon eggs in a classroom or vocational facility.

Collection Activities

Under this category of FRP, the department reviews and processes applications to collect fish, shellfish or aquatic plant specimens at a particular estuarine or freshwater site. The disposition of the specimens can vary; specimens are either: 1) killed at the collection site; 2) caught, measured, sampled and released unharmed at the collection site, or 3) transported live to an aquarium in a secure facility with the specimens never being allowed to leave that site alive.

The reasons for scientists or educators capturing and/or collecting fish are diverse. Most requests for scientific collection actions stem from a need to: (1) conduct impact analyses on proposed activities; (2) manipulate aquatic habitat features to improve fish productivity; or (3) obtain fish resource data that will support legitimate academic inquires (research). Done properly, the capture, collection, and disposition of fish can provide considerable educational value, for example in field ecology studies, aquatic education/dissection programs, and preparing voucher specimens from a specific location.

Holding Activities

Under this category, permit applications are reviewed and processed for: non-propagative research that requires keeping live specimens for some duration after capture; exhibition of live freshwater specimens; or export of live fresh or saltwater specimens from the state. Exportation of live specimens from Alaska requires that you submit a valid importation permit issued by the appropriate resource agency of the importing state or country along with your FRP application.

A permit in this category will allow transport and live holding of specimens bound for containment and maintenance in aquaria. The permit number must be displayed on each aquarium. This permit will fulfill the requirements of 5 AAC 41, for transport and possession of live fish.

Application Forms

Application Review Period

The review period for each type of fish resource permit varies. Once a complete application packet is received, the maximum review period for each successive permit can range from 30 days (for salmon incubation and fish resource permits) to 45 days (for fish transport permits). This gives reviewers time to evaluate the potential risks to natural fish stocks in the area.

Proposed activities requiring multiple permits may require more time. However, the department’s reviewers coordinate their reviews for complex projects. The more thorough and complete your permit application, the shorter the likely review time.

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