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Assistant Area Management Biologist
February 27, 2014
Anglers are advised that, in an effort to meet king salmon escapement goals in the Anchor River, Deep Creek and Ninilchik River drainages, the following sport fishing restrictions are in effect from Thursday, May 1 through Monday, June 30, 2014:
• The Anchor River is closed to sport fishing on Wednesdays.
• The Anchor River drainage is closed to sport fishing upstream of the Old Sterling Highway Bridge located approximately 550 feet below the junction of the North and South forks Anchor River.
• The combined annual limit is 2 king salmon 20 inches or greater in length for fish harvested in the Anchor River, Deep Creek, and Ninilchik River and all marine waters south of the latitude of the mouth of the Ninilchik River to the latitude of Bluff Point.
• Anglers may only use one unbaited, single-hook, artificial lure on the Anchor River, Deep Creek, and Ninilchik River.
Lower Kenai Peninsula king salmon, like other king salmon stocks throughout Cook Inlet, are experiencing a period of low productivity. The 2014 outlook for the Anchor and Ninilchik rivers king salmon runs are below the historical average. The runs are expected to be similar in size to those observed since 2009, when escapement goals were achieved in some years and not in others despite restricted fishing regulations. King salmon originating from the Ninilchik and Anchor rivers and Deep Creek have a higher probability of being harvested in marine waters south of the Ninilchik River to Bluff Point from May through June. In combination, these restrictions will provide the best chance to achieve sustainable escapement goals in these streams and reduce the potential of inseason closures while providing fishing opportunity.