Bristol Bay Fisheries Report: June 27, 2020

Jun 27, 2020

The Naknek-Kvichak fleet hauled in the most fish yesterday. The sockeye run at the Chignik weir is now below what it was at this point in 2018. Across the bay, the total run has topped 1.6 million fish -- right around where it was in 2015.


A man climbing a ladder at the Dillingham harbor. June 25, 2020.
Credit Sage Smiley/KDLG


COVID-19 update

Stay up-to-date on the lates news about COVID-19 in Bristol Bay with KDLG's COVID-19 page

There were five new cases of COVID-19 reported in Bristol Bay June 26. The City of Dillingham reported those cases. According to the city, the cases were close contacts of the 12 OBI Seafoods cases announced June 22. The workers were in quarantine and are now in isolation, along with three close contacts who will receive additional testing. The city says it is working with the seafood company and the state on contact tracing.

The Camai clinic in Naknek reported 3 positive test results June 26. The people who tested positive are asymptomatic, in isolation, and have been in quarantine since arriving in the borough. They are all seafood workers, who were identified as part of the processors' protection plan. Camai says that contact tracing has started.

As of the last counts we received, there are 24 active cases in Bristol Bay Borough, 16 in Lake & Peninsula Borough, and 18 in the Dillingham census area. The total bay-wide is 58. Those numbers include residents and non-resident workers. 

In the numbers...

On the west side, in the Nushagak District

During yesterday’s openers, the Nushagak fleet hauled in 145,000 fish. The total harvest is now at 338,400. The majority was caught by Nushagak’s drift fleet, which caught almost 60% of the harvest, and had an average of about 240 fish per delivery. Set netters in the Nushagak caught about 30%, and Igushik set netters caught just over 11%.

Escapement across the district yesterday was a little shy of 110,000. The total is now 472,100. The total run in the Nushagak district is now 810,500.

Breaking that down by escapement…

Nushagak River

At the Nushagak River sonar, 55,000 sockeye escaped up the river yesterday. Escapement there is at 242,600. The king run there was 3,500 yesterday for a total of 25,100. And chum are at 3,100, for a total escapement of 26,800. 

Wood River

Over at the Wood River, as of 6 a.m. this morning, the Wood River crew had counted 12,300 fish. Escapement yesterday was at 50,600. The total is now 231,400.

Igushik River

The Igushik crew counted 800 fish as of 6 a.m. Daily escapement yesterday was 4,300. Cumulative escapement is now just over 11,000. 


Togiak’s fleet hauled in 100 fish, bringing the total harvest to 900. No escapement numbers yet. There are 34 sockeye per drift delivery in that district. Effort’s been low in Togiak so far, according to Fish and Game. Windy weather means that effort will probably stay low over the next few days. 

The Togiak tower starts counting next week. Fish and Game expects to have the first full day of tower counts on July 4.

Over to the east side now, in the Naknek-Kvichak

The Naknek-Kvichak fleet had the largest catch yesterday, at 163,000 fish. The total catch there is now 237,600. The district’s drift fleet caught about three fourths of that, and it had an average of 360 fish per drift delivery. Naknek setnetters caught a fifth, and Kvichak set netters caught just 6% of the catch. 

Escapement yesterday across the district was 19,300, for a total of 72,200. The total run there is now 310,000. 

We have the first escapement numbers from the Kvichak. The tower counted 66 fish yesterday, for a total of 276 fish. In the Naknek, 19,200 fish escaped for a total of 72,000. 


In Egegik, the fleet caught 117,000 fish, for a cumulative harvest of 329,700. Escapement yesterday was 17,600. So far this season, 134,400 fish have escaped up the Egegik River. The in-river estimate is 25,000, and the total run is now 509,200. 

Egegik’s drift fleet caught about 87% of the total harvest so far this season, with 365 fish per delivery. The set netters caught 13%. 


Wrapping up the Bristol Bay numbers, no daily catch from Ugashik. The harvest there stands at 9,000.  

Across the bay, the total catch yesterday was 425,100, and the total harvest is approaching 1 million -- it’s at 935,700. Escapement around the bay is now at 678,700, and the total run now stands at 1.6 million. That’s below where the run was in the past few years -- it’s right around the total run on this date in 2015. 


The sockeye run at the Chignik weir is now below what it was at this point in 2018. At this point in 2018, the run was at 89,000. Right now, the run is at 55,460. The early run is at 54,132. 

The late run this year is above the late run in 2018, when it was just 115 fish at this point. This year, the late run is at 1,328. 

On June 26, 6,788 sockeye passed the weir. Yesterday, 12 chinook passed through the weir. The season total for chinook is 48.

As of noon today, no sockeye have passed the weir. 6 have passed through the weir.


Area M

Over on the South Peninsula in Area M, we have an update on harvest numbers. The fleet has hauled in 1.6 million pinks to date. The sockeye catch is at 311,000, the chinook harvest is at 2,630. Chum are at 451,600, and the coho catch is just 243. 

The set net, drift, and seine fleets there are currently in the middle of a multi-day opener that started Thursday morning and ends at 10:00 p.m. on Sunday.

Permit registration on June 27 9:00 a.m. to June 29 at 9:00 a.m.

Who is fishing where:

A total of 1,486 permits are fishing on 1,156 vessels as of 9 a.m. this morning. That will increase to 1,556 permits on 1,204 vessels at 9 a.m. on Monday, June 29. 329 of the boats are D boats. On Monday, the D boats go up to 351. 

The majority of those boats are in the Nushagak right now -- 45% of the fleet is on the west side right now. The district has 669 permits on 511 vessels. That will go up to 672 permits on 512 boats.  157 of those vessels are D boats, and the D boat count goes up by 2, to 159 on Monday. 

Egegik has the second-highest permit count. About a quarter of the fleet -- 26.5% -- is in that district. That’s 395 permits on 308 vessels. Those go up to 409 permits on 319 boats at 9 a.m. Monday. 87 of those vessels are D boats, and that will go up to 90 on Monday.

The Naknek-Kvichak’s permit count is just under Egegik’s. Another quarter of the fleet -- 24% -- is fishing in the Naknek-Kvichak. There are 361 permits on 284 boats, 77 of which are D boats. The D boat count goes up to 94 Monday, when the district will have 414 permits on 320 boats.

On to Togiak, 32 permits are fishing on 32 vessels. That’s just 2% of the Bristol Bay fleet, and those numbers stay the same at 9 a.m. on Monday. 

Finally in Ugashik, there are 29 permits fishing on 21 vessels. There are 8 D boats in Ugashik, and those numbers stay the same on Monday. 

Port Moller

The Port Moller Test Fishery didn’t fish any stations yesterday. The Ocean Cat came back to Port Moller for mechanical reasons Thursday night. The test fishery says those issues have now been addressed. In an update last night, Scott Raborn said the Ocean Cat will try to steam to Station 8 and start there today, fishing as many stations as possible. The weather might be too rough for the Americanus, which is a smaller vessel.


PMTF Stock Composition Status: Genetic samples from June 24 and June 25 made it to the Gene Lab yesterday night -- those were two of the test fishery’s biggest catch days of the year. If all goes well, we could have the third stock composition estimate this afternoon. And we’ll have those numbers tomorrow.


Correction: The percent allocations of harvest by gear type in Egegik are calculated from the cumulative harvest, not the daily catch as initially reported.