(Released: February 26, 2020 - Expired: July 15, 2020)

Division of Sport Fish
Dave Rutz, Director
Anchorage Headquarters Office
333 Raspberry Road
Anchorage, AK 99518

Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Doug Vincent-Lang, Commissioner
P.O. Box 115526
Juneau, AK 99811-5526

Contact: Mike Booz, Area Management Biologist
(907) 235-8191

King Salmon Restrictions in the Cook Inlet Saltwaters

(Homer) - In favor of protecting returning king salmon and ensuring sport fishing opportunities in the future, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is reducing the annual limit of king salmon 20 inches or greater in length from five to two fish in the Cook Inlet saltwaters North of the latitude of Bluff Point (59° 40.00' N. lat.). This regulatory change is effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, April 1 through 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, July 15, 2020.

“Given the uncertainties of the 2020 king salmon run strength of nearby Cook Inlet stocks, ADF&G is managing this fishery conservatively from the beginning,” stated Area Management Biologist Mike Booz. “We are hopeful that this annual limit will minimize shifting effort due to restrictions on other Cook Inlet freshwater king salmon fisheries. There are no restrictions to the summer saltwater fishery south of Bluff Point, which is mostly composed of nonlocal feeder king salmon stocks.”

In conjunction with this restriction, emergency order 2-KS-7-06-20 restricts fishing gear to only one unbaited, single-hook, artificial lure in the Anchor River and Deep Creek drainages from May 16-June 30, 2020. In addition, emergency order 2-KS-7-07-20 restricts the bag and possession limit in the Ninilchik River drainage to one hatchery king salmon 20 inches or greater in length during the Memorial Day weekend (May 23-May 25), and the following two weekends and Mondays following each weekend, (May 30-June 1 and June 6-June 8). Please review the emergency orders in their entirety.

King salmon escapement monitoring will begin in May using sonar and underwater video on the Anchor River, Deep Creek, and Ninilchik River. As the runs progress, run strength will be evaluated to determine future management actions.

For more information, please contact Area Management Biologist Mike Booz or Assistant Area Management Biologist Holly Dickson at 907-235-8191.