Petersburg Pilot -


Yesterday's News


September 27, 1913 – Better than 40,000 cases of salmon already put up and still the fish keeps coming. That is the situation in which the Pacific Coast & Norway Packing Company finds itself today. Although late in the season when the management got through with the work of putting up the traps, the location of each trap seems to have been favorable and are still fishing quite profitable.

It is rumored that the company has ordered more cans and purpose keeping the cannery working as long as the traps keep up the supply.

September 28, 1983 – Chemicals in sharks blood keep the animals from getting cancer and one scientist hopes to use those chemicals in a human cancer cure.

Leighton King, director of the Scottsdale Medical Research Foundation in Hawaii, is seeking samples of sharks blood to continue his cancer research, he said.

Petersburg fishermen could profit from the project, said Brian Paust, director of the Marine Advisory Program.

King's assistant has asked for a salmon shark sample from local fishermen. Should the sample prove effective, the research foundation and other laboratories might be interested in paying high prices for sharks blood, King said.

“Right now it is still a research effort,” Kind said. “It could become a good market in two years.”

In processing the sharks blood for research use, King first removes the red blood cells. Then he extracts “agents and components” and creates serum samples. The serums are injected in cancer infected mice, chickens and hamsters.

Serum is 100 percent effective in curing hamsters and chickens with cancer tumors, he said. Mice only experience a 65 to 75 percent cancer protection ratio, he said.

King is interested in trying serums from several shark species because some shark blood is more effective than others, he said.

Bull shark and bronze whale shark blood is most effective in preventing cancer virus growth, he said. Bull shark blood is worth about $300 a gallon, Paust said.

King has been researching shark blood since 1976. World Life Research Institute in California and the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) have helped King Finance his research.

“I'm a long way from any clinical evaluation,” he said.

October 7, 1993 – “If you catch any sablefish with pink tags please keep these fish separate from the rest of the catch and do not remove their heads!”

With that announcement last month the Alaska Department of Fish & Game prepared fishermen to help with an ongoing study of a mystery of the deep that should help with future fish management.

ADF&G is helping the North Marine Fisheries Service with research into black cod aging, according to ADF&G finfish management biologist Barry Bracken.

The pink floy tags placed on fish by NMFS – to help determine aging – is different from the orange tags placed on sablefish by ADF&G – to help determine mobility, he pointed out.

During the recent Southeast opener for black cod Sept. 25 and 26, six pink tags were recovered, Bracken said.

He said that was a good result, since only 6,000 sablefish were tagged in 1988 at the Auke Bay Lab, and released into Chatham Strait.

“Black cod” is really not a codfish, Bracken said, adding that “sablefish” is a more appropriate term.

Sablefish live up to 45 to 50 years, he said, which means that when fish are harvested it takes a long time for the stock to be replaced.

In 1988, NMFS injected tagged fish with a chemical that marks the otolith, or bony structure in the skull cavity.

That's why researchers want the whole fish, Bracken said, so they can look at the otolith, which carries marks similar to tree rings to help estimate age of the fish.

With the pink tag research, scientists hope to get a more exact estimate and understanding of sablefish aging, so that long-range management of the fishery will be more efficient, he said.

November 6, 2003 – Solar flares and northern lights are just a little of the spectacular elements Little Norway residents can look forward to in the coming winter months. Petersburg should be covered in a winter wonderland.

“According to the Climate Center we (Juneau-Petersburg) should be near normal temperatures and snowfall,” National Oceanic & Atmospheric meteorologist intern Aaron Jacobs said. “But since the last couple years they have been above average temperature and below average precipitation we are expecting a little more precip this year. That means more snowfall.”

This same outlook resulted in over 124 inches of snow from November 1998 to March of 1999. Last year was a neutral weather passing between El Ninjo and El Ninja, thus the milder snow.


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