- Associated Press - Monday, June 15, 2015

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) - State fishery managers have planned subsistence salmon limits to manage this summer’s Yukon River king salmon run.

The department announced last week that gear restrictions have already been planned to protect the fish, reported The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (https://bit.ly/1SiaiFW).

Under the new limits, fishermen who are targeting non-salmon species at other times will be required to release kings back into the water alive.

The first king was caught in the Lower Yukon Test Fishery on May 28. The first Chinooks should arrive in Stevens Village within several days. Kings are expected to be seen in Fort Yukon and Circle the following week.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game plans to implement subsistence salmon closures as kings start heading through the districts in the Upper Yukon.

Last month, fishery managers predicted a weak king salmon run, with restrictions anticipated on subsistence fishermen but no commercial fishing expected.

The Pacific Salmon Treaty calls for a minimum of 42,500 kings to reach the Canada border each summer. The limits are necessary in order get that number of kings to their Canadian spawning grounds.

More than 60,000 kings made it to Canada last year, marking the first time in three years that the escapement goal was reached.

This summer’s chum salmon run is predicted to have a better outlook.

A normal subsistence harvest is expected, with between 800,000 and 1.4 million chums available for commercial fishermen.

Subsistence and commercial fishing periods opened for chum as the fish began entering the Lower Yukon last week.


Information from: Fairbanks (Alaska) Daily News-Miner, https://www.newsminer.com

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