Commercial Fishing

Courtesy of Apay'uq Moore

A third of the state’s subsistence salmon harvest was caught in Bristol Bay in 2017. That’s according to a new report from the McKinley Research Group. The subsistence economy is critical to Bristol Bay’s culture, and it’s the oldest and most continuous use of salmon here. 

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The Wards Cove Packing Company operated the facility on the Egegik River from the 1960s until it closed in 2002. 



Avery Lill/KDLG

Subsistence users near Dillingham can dip net this summer, and they can catch fish any time they like because the Board of Fisheries voted to remove a schedule that restricted subsistence fishing in the area to three days per week during peak sockeye season. 

Bristol Bay Fisheries Report: June 29, 2018

Jun 29, 2018
Austin Fast / KDLG

Catches slipped lower in the Nushagak Thursday after Tuesday's giant haul. Naknek-Kvichak is heating up, but participation remains low. Plus, we meet a deckhand who fills most of the links along the salmon supply chain from ocean to table since he moonlights as a direct marketer and private chef.

Austin Fast / KDLG

Salmon usually pass through many hands on their way from ocean waves to the table, but not for Christopher Wang of San Francisco. He’s a deckhand on the F/V Marion Ruth who single-handedly completes most of the salmon supply chain as a fisherman, direct marketer and private chef all rolled into one.

Rower survives ocean capsize to fish Bristol Bay

Jun 22, 2018
Austin Fast / KDLG

Ask fishermen what the worst-case scenario on the water could be, and many might say going overboard. One greenhorn in Bristol Bay’s commercial salmon fishery faced that nightmare in a rowboat near the Bermuda Triangle. KDLG’s Austin Fast caught up with him in Dillingham before the start of the season.

Iliamna Transportation Company

Fishermen are antsy at Williamsport as floodwaters covering the one-lane road halted portage to Bristol Bay. KDLG's Austin Fast spoke with the company hauling all those boats over the mountain on Wednesday.

Togiak restricts hours to conserve kings

Jun 18, 2018
Hannah Colton / KDLG

Togiak has the smallest and latest salmon run of Bristol Bay's five districts, but it’s already been open for commercial fishing per its regular weekly schedule since June 1.

Courtesy of BBRSDA

The new program aims to improve fish quality by putting hydraulic RSW units on the vessels of CDQ qualified fishermen. 

The Pebble Mine project is a source of controversy in Dillingham because of the potential damage it could cause to th fish stocks.  While most opposition to the mine is quite direct, a fisherman’s association hopes to convey their message through photography.  KDLG’s Chase Cavanaugh has more.

UAF Bristol Bay Campus

The University of Alaska Fairbanks and the Marine Advisory Program are teaming up to teach the art of commercial fishing in the Bristol Bay region. KDLG’s Luke Brummer has more.

Alaska House Majority

The Alaska House of Representatives voted unanimously Wednesday in favor of legislation intended to fix a problem with the use of commercial fishing “dude” licenses. KDLG’s Mike Mason has the story.

More Fishing Jobs in Alaska

Nov 20, 2013

Some new data from the State of Alaska indicates that the number of fishing jobs in the state of Alaska has been inching upwards over the last few years. KDLG’s Mike Mason has the story.

A couple of commercial fishermen were found guilty of violations last week in Naknek. 46-year old Sergie Chukwak of Naknek was cited by the State Troopers for fishing during a closed period near Naknek and he was found guilty of that charge during a bench trial on August 26th in the Naknek District Court.


The daily harvest of sockeye in the massive Bristol Bay commercial fishery topped 1-million fish on Sunday. Through Sunday the total catch Bay-wide is over 3.2-million sockeye.