Bristol Bay Fisheries Report: July 29, 2019

Jul 29, 2019

We’re in the final stretch of our show this summer, and we don’t have a daily run summary for the bay today. So we’re taking a look at the South Peninsula’s Area M. It’s cumulative harvest for pink salmon is now almost 11 million. The majority of those fish were caught in June, making up that month's largest harvest on record.

Processing a late season red, July 29, 2019.
Credit Courtesy of Brian Venua

 

The total sockeye run past the Chignik Weir is just over 2,000 -- that’s mainly late run fish. The total run there is now 534,400. That is about 200,000 over where the run was at this time last year. 

After just one unproductive opener in the first half of the season, the Chigniks have seen much more fishing in the late run. Since July 21st, they’ve been in an opener that’s been extended three separate times. Currently, the opener is set to end at 11:59 p.m. on July 30, but it could be extended again.

The North Peninsula’s Area M has harvested 2 million sockeye. The South Peninsula’s sockeye harvest is at 1.2 million. The pink harvest there is now just shy of 11 million.

 A new fish tax has been proposed in the Bristol Bay Borough, which would impact any processors in King Salmon, Naknek, and South Naknek.  Every year when fishermen come to town for the summer, the amount of people in the borough increases exponentially. Resources and utilities that normally serve less than a thousand people are put under exponentially increased demand simply because more people are using them. 

The primary aim of this tax is to address the borough’s wastewater system. Right now, it’s operating at capacity during the fishing season, and the borough says it would need some work and development to keep supporting the processors and let them consider expansion.

Because of that, the proposed tax is aimed at processors. A 3% tax on raw fish is already in place, but this proposed measure would be on processed fish.

 

Of course, there are some other borough services that get more use during the fishing season, like police and EMTs, but this tax is first and foremost to address upgrades to the wastewater system.

 

As fishermen head in from the water, BBRSDA wants to remind them about the assosiation's ongoing photo contest. As part of the BBRSDA’s effort to promote Bristol Bay Salmon, it is taking submissions of photos from out on the water, retro photos from seasons past, and anything that highlights Bristol Bay sockeye. The five best photos in each category will win $100 each, the best photo in each category will win $150, and the most popular photo overall will win 30,000 Alaska Air Miles.

You can enter by sending pictures to photos@BBRSDA.com and find out more info on the website, BBRSDA.com. Once you’re there, you can also create a profile to help the association promote Bristol Bay salmon.

 

Boats in the Nushagak District, June 24, 2019.
Credit Alex Hager/KDLG
 

Contact the author at isabelle@kdlg.org 907-842-2200.