(Released: September 16, 2019 - Expired: December 31, 2019)
Division of Sport Fish
Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Contact: Jay Baumer, Area Management Biologist
(Anchorage) - The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is prohibiting the use of bait on the Copper River Highway streams effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, September 18 through 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, December 31, 2019. The Copper River Highway streams include all freshwaters drainages crossed by the Copper River Highway from and including Eyak River to the Million Dollar Bridge, including Clear Creek at mile 42 downstream of the Carbon Mountain Road Bridge.
“With the low numbers of coho salmon seen in the aerial survey we need to reduce harvest to ensure escapement for future coho returns,” stated Jay Baumer Sport Fish Area Management Biologist.
On September 11, 2019, the Copper River Delta (CRD) drainage aerial survey count for coho salmon was estimated at 8,565 coho salmon versus an anticipated range of 18,286 – 38,285. In addition, during the CRD aerial survey mortalities were observed in other reaches of Ibeck Creek likely related to low water conditions. The Copper River Delta area had been experiencing drought conditions with minimal to no rain. It has been determined that low water conditions over the last few weeks likely impeded fish migration. To help increase escapement in the CRD eliminating bait from the sport fishery is warranted.
For additional information, please contact the Area Management Biologist Jay Baumer at (907) 267-2265.