Seine fishery closes Hidden Falls harvest area
The Southeast Seine fishery is performing as expected despite a closure last week, said Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG) biologist Dan Gray.
“As expected, we have a fairly low pink salmon forecast and it’s early yet in the development of that run, but it looks like what we thought,” Gray said.
In the Hidden Falls terminal harvest area, the Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association needs 180,000 chum salmon for brood stock. As of July 8, only 5,000 passed the barrier net and into a containment area.
“Without that in place it draws some effort to other areas,” Gray said. “Many of the managers didn’t feel comfortable opening what would otherwise be marginally acceptable fisheries in the other areas. It was kind of that domino effect.”
Last week, managers did not open the mid-week purse seine opening. The Southeast region was reopened Sunday.
ADFG is closing the Hidden Falls harvest area until brood stock goals are met. As of July 15, 80,000 fish have passed over the barrier net.
Gray said sockeye salmon harvests are doing well across the region, and harvests are above projections in some areas.
“We’re still pretty early in the game here,” Gray said. “Things can change very quickly.”