(Released: March 04, 2020 - Expired: July 25, 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: Tyler Polum, Area Management Biologist
(907) 486-1880

Ayakulik River Closed to King Salmon Fishing

(Kodiak) - In favor of protecting returning king salmon and ensuring fishing opportunities in the future, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is closing sport fishing for king salmon in the Ayakulik River drainage effective 12:01 a.m. Monday, June 1 through 11:59 p.m. Saturday, July 25, 2020. This closure prohibits sport fishing for king salmon, including catch-and-release. During the closure, king salmon may not be targeted, possessed, or retained; king salmon that are caught incidentally while fishing for other species may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately. In addition, as an added measure to reduce incidental hooking of king salmon, the use of bait is prohibited and only one unbaited, single-hook artificial lure may be used in the Ayakulik River drainage.

“Even with management actions to reduce king salmon retention in sport, commercial, and subsistence fisheries, the king salmon escapement goal has not been achieved for several years,” stated Area Management Biologist Tyler Polum. “The Board of Fisheries designated this fishery a stock of concerns during its January 2020 meeting, Therefore, the combination of poor king salmon returns and the designation of a stock of concerns warrants closing fishing for king salmon in the Ayakulik River drainage.”

King salmon angling opportunities may be restored in the Ayakulik River drainage by a subsequent emergency order, if inseason assessment indicates the king salmon run is stronger than anticipated. Beginning late May, ADF&G staff will closely monitor this fishery at the Ayakulik River salmon counting weir.

For additional information, please contact Area Management Biologist Tyler Polum at (907) 486-1880.