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Alaska winter Chinook changes

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Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Sun Jun 26, 2016 8:17 am

For those of you with an Alaskan troll permit, you will soon be getting a newsletter from ATA. In it, is a questionnaire asking if you feel that more Chinook quota should be moved from the summer fishery to the winter fishery, and if so, what amount? 5, 10, or 15,000 fish. The current winter GHL is 43,000 to 47,000 fish.
There is also pro and con statements from board members, which we will dissect in a while. The overall reasoning behind the questionnaire is to garner a feeling for what the majority of the fleet wants, so a decision can be made whether to write a proposal that would attempt to do so.
I am the only person listed as having authored the pro comment, though I am certainly not the only boardmember, or troller who is in support of the concept.
My personal overall reasons for supporting the concept are as follows;
First and foremost, is price. Throughout the vast majority of the winter season, the price is around triple what the summer price is, and even in April when a large amount of the GHL is harvested, the price is usually double what summer is. This is for ice boats. There are freezer boats with their own markets in the summer, which amount to around 8% of the fleet. For the vast majority of us, winter is simply a far better price. Next for me, is this,, the Alaska Board of Fisheries is just that. They should be charged with doing what is in the best interests of Alaska. Having a commercial salmon fishery open all winter long is healthy for the communities of Alaska, this has to be considered first before the needs of those who simply just don't want to come up and fish in the foul weather. In my estimation , our whole Chinook harvest structure could use an overhaul. The last time this was done was by a Chinook task force in 1994. We are giving away the vast majority of our overall Chinook quota for to cheap by having an old school salmon derby for a few days in July and flooding a market that is usually already awash in fish that time of year.
Now those opposed to the concept, or any other kind of rehab for that matter, will say that the original intent was to insure a certain number of Chinook retention days in summer, so there wasn't to many days of incidental mortality during the coho fishery, and risk losing coho time. It has been said that 20 Chinook retention days was viewed as optimal. Well, less than half of the years since 1994, and none of the recent years have hit the 20 day mark, and. There hasn't been any ill effects thus far. 15,000 fish, should we decide to move that amount, wouldn't even get you a one day clean up opener in summer anyway, but could add two weeks or more on to the winter fishery. If it ever were forced on us to have longer summer seasons, 15,000 fish isn't going to make the slightest difference. What needs to happen is a restructuring of how we harvest. Another reason the cons are opposed to adding to the winter fishery is, they say, " the vast amount of winter quota harvested in just a couple of statistical regions." This is true enough, and it causes congestion when guys from other regions flock to the area that is producing. The problem isn't the winter fishery though, the problem is the same obstinance by the same people to any type of change to the structure that will allow for other regions to be able to catch better. If you want to spread the winter fish out better,,, then let's do so, rather than use it as an excuse to hold the overall winter fishery to lower numbers. Sitka sound produces over 80% of the fish most winters. I don't suppose those partaking much appreciate the congestion. Every year now we can read about melt downs and gear tangles. The proper move to make,,, if your thinking as fleet, and not an individual would be to clamp that area down a bit, and ratchet other areas production up a little. Usually this means adjusting placement of winter lines. This. In theory, would better diversify the fleet.
The same can be said of summer. The derby that it is now, is custom designed to benefit a few large open ocean boats that catch the vast majority of the summer quota. This is many many times more fish than the winter fishery by the way. If we really needed to lengthen the summer season out to 20 days or more, than the proper way to do it would be to add to the list of of areas of high abundance some of the areas that are know to produce large volumes of fish quickly. This in effect, would slow things down. Unfortunately, it would also allow for the fish to be spread out better amoung the fleet, and it's why the summer scoops fight it so vehemently. By doing this, I believe we could also see an increase in price overall by not flooding the market with 3/4's of our Chinook quota in a one week fishery. Look what spreading halibut out over the whole summer has done for their prices.
There are many changes that need to happen, moving fish to winter is only one of them. It won't be easy, those who currently have all the pie in front of them aren't going to give it up willingly. I would like for all who read this to take the time to discuss issues with your fellow trollers, and be sure and send in your questionnaire and weigh in. Thanks, and good fishin' to all!
Casey Mapes- hand troll representative on ATA board.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby carojae » Sun Jun 26, 2016 10:23 pm

No.........

This issue has been dealt with before for much the same reasons you have given.
It used to be we had a lot of King Salmon around and it was easy to catch 50, 100 kings or more a day thanks to a hatchery located in Canada, Robertson Creek. These fish were huge, but weren't Alaskan - they were Canadian and deemed to be wild because of where they originated. These fish caused fisherman a lot of problems and politics seemed to play in the background with a certain gear group claiming their fish were the most valuable blah blah blah and so on.
Back to trollers.
Back in the early 1990's, there was a movement advocating a winter troll fishery only for King Salmon since our season's were getting shorter and shorter with the abundance of Kings so high. The dissension began to fester amongst the trollers on who should get these fish. Basically it was Sitka vs the rest of the fleet was the feeling I got. The fleet in general wasn't liking the short summer seasons (partly because of a big winter catch but mostly because the season was so short with lots of kings). Almost everyone saw it as unfair to them no matter where they were fishing and everyone wanted more fish or at least their fair share.
So, a task force was put together to try to get a consensus on some degree of fairness. Today's formula is the result of that task force. 45K winter, 70/30 split for the summer season. If I remember right, 45K was thought to be potentially reached on rare occassion. I think this winter's catch was "a rare occassion" but there is obviously more effort.
How the task force arrived at that formula largely had to do with Cape Edgecumbe. I remember a super highliner decribing Cape Edgecumbe during negotiations as "P R I M E " in his words. The deep water areas of the Cape Edgecumbe and Sitka Sound were producing a lot of fish for a select group leaving the other fisherman with the derby style catching in the summer months. You'd better be on them or you won't get any fish to make your living.
The task force talked about moving the Sitka Sound boundary lines in to around Vitskari rocks to cut down on the winter catch; area fisherman wouldn't hear of it. So 45k is the result of that negotiation and the winter lines remained the same. Simple as that.
No, any change in the statu quo would result in some fisherman not getting any fish and others getting more. And if we are all contributing to the 3% enhancement tax, then we are all entitled to catch them without fear of reallocation which is what more fish to the winter fishery would amount to.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Sun Jun 26, 2016 11:06 pm

Yes,,

The task force was held 25 years ago, was it ever the intent that we should permanently set in stone guidelines which future generations would adhere to forever? Things change. Bristol Bay wasn't dumping 30 million RSW sockeye into the summer markets to name just one. It's time for a new task force to take a fresh look.
I fail to see what paying a 3% hatchery tax has to do with us catching down South treaty fish in a general opener.
And I fail to see, why you would point towards the high catch rate in Sitka in the winter fishery, while ignoring the statistics of the summer fishery. A very high percentage of the summer fish are harvested by a small percentage of boats,,, and that, in a very short amount of time. The rules were made to suite those who profit from it. The Sitka district does in fact catch a high percentage of the winter fish, but it's not only Sitka fishermen. Trollers from all over SE flock there because the rules have never been revisited to consider accommodating the effectiveness of other regions in order to spread out the effort. For this reason, it IS true that many years the 43k-47k GHL goes unfullfilled, and carries over and into the coin purses of the giants of summer.
I wouldn't ever support having a winter only fishery. I've always felt like we should be utilizing fish as we catch them, rather than wasting them in the form of bi- catch . If we closed the big gun areas, we could sell a few kings as we caught them all summer long, but that wouldn't suite a guy who's accustomed to putting in a couple thousand kings in a July opener, and it certainly wouldn't suite a guy who is in a hurry to come up and pillage the place and run back South either.
The question is about moving a maximum of 15,000 fish to winter. 15,000 fish wouldn't even get you a one day clean up opener in summer.
Many of us wanted to revise the 70/30 split you speak of, with the intent of spreading the summer fishery out, and it would have done so if we went to the 60/40 that was proposed, but it also would have inherently spread the fish out more too, and THAT is why the same old guard that clings so tightly to the same 25 year old rule book they wrote, opposed it.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby carojae » Mon Jun 27, 2016 7:59 am

25 years ago....Bristol bay.....

You fail to see? Look up reallocation and see what that means.

Say what you will, my opinion is this is an attempt to reallocate a resource that doesn't belong to any section of the gear group specifically winter fisherman.

I don't like it. You like it. You asked, I responded.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Mon Jun 27, 2016 8:52 am

Hey, I'm ok with whatever we decide as a fleet. I just would like to see a recent visiting of the planning, with honest, equal representation of everybody, winter, summer, large, and small. We have to be fair in recognizing that there are inequalities in both the winter, AND summer fisheries.
And most of all, we could use the straight up truth when it comes to looking at our options. The same old scarecrow stuff has been handed down for so long,,, it winds up turning into gospel. i.e.- " if we move fish to winter, we could lose coho days for lack of retention days." Never once have I heard it discussed that there are other options,,,like closing a few high retention areas to retard the catch rate. If we're ever going to get to a spot where we try to redo things to try to even things out, we need to have all the information on the table, not just the stuff we want people to hear.
Lastly. We need to consider what the majority of the fleet would benefit from. Statistics indicate that 70/30 is good for the bigger 30% of the fleet, 60/40 would have been better for the other 70%. Yet we tend to take official stances, without consideration of the majority. The other user groups all pull in the same direction, and we are generally fractionalized at every meeting, this doesn't help our cause. All I'm saying is, living in continual denial by saying we speak for the whole fleet, when we often are speaking for less than half, has to change. We need to get in the same room, and iron it out until everybody feels like it's as fair as it can be, or at least the majority is suited.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Wed Jun 29, 2016 10:23 pm

Price for July 1- 4.00 lb. when it's been well over 7 all spring long. This in advance of the usual glut. Season expected around 5 days long. Last year we didn't even get a 30 % August opener because we slammed over our entire quota in July. Were not doing what's best for our fleet. Our organizations and managers need to be told to stop regulating to serve only the minority big boat club. I DO understand what's going on. I get that the aim has been to demonstrate that when we slam soooo much fish in July, means there's more abundance than was accounted for,
And we should have gotten more. Well, it's not working. In the mean time, were making it damn hard for the most of us to keep in business.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby John Murray » Thu Jul 07, 2016 10:42 am

Thanks for opening the discussion on troll management.Since BOF proposals are due next April the timing good.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 12:55 am

Dang right the timing is good. We have lots to talk about. Like what measures we can take to lengthen out the summer Chinook fishery, should we move some fish to winter, how we can better spread winter out to more than one statistical area, and last but not least,,,, that we are NOT pirates up here in Alaska stealing your fish. One hundred percent of the hatchery fish from down South, which is mostly what we catch, is paid for, 100% of it,,with U.S. tax dollars. They are all OUR fish,,, and WE have fed them for longer than you. The treaty is a broken unmitigated lie from cover to cover. At what point will we have enough, and make a stand of some kind? Currently 10-15 % of us are catching enough to not want to risk going to court, or even more drastic measures. This by the way would be the 10-15% who are running things, so we keep on taking it. When it finally gets bad enough that not even they are making a living, and they finally decide to fight, the rest of us will be so long gone, they won't have anyone to stand with them. Why is it so hard to understand how a 50 year phase out works?
Yeah,, it's time for a whole new task force discussion.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 1:11 am

I'm not ashamed to tell how bad I got screwed. I tried hard. Daylight till dark power trolling the first day caught 2 kings, and 4 coho on this end. I know a lot of guys with the same luck, all down the coast.
I remember discussing this in meetings before. I was pushing for measures that would have spread the season out more. Someone said," a guy who takes a risk, and buys a big boat, deserves a chance at making more money. That's why we need to keep it like it is."
Well guess what? I know that very guy. Beautiful new boat on a bank loan. Went to Fairweather and lost his shirt.
The derby needs to stop.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby Once and Future » Fri Jul 08, 2016 7:16 am

I think the discussion is important to have. Is there a way to have the discussion without in-fighting?

Is the problem that Sitka has become the best place to catch fish? And we can't all operate in Sitka because the grounds and harbors have become crowded?

I am too junior in the industry to pitch answers. But I would like to understand the angles. And then there is what can be said publicly, and what is actually discussed privately...
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 8:25 am

Absolutely agree Once and Future. It would be nice if the discussion could follow a positive note.
There's a complex array of changes that have been long over do. Statistics indicate that in the winter fishery, 80+ percent of the fish are harvested on the Sitka line. Even in this small stat. area, the catch is broken down to a small minority that are able to get out on the winter line. This winter there was probably not more than a couple dozen boats that likely made in excess of 1/4 million dollars. I don't exactly know, I wasn't there, but I do know how it works. The winter line divides what's inside, and what's outside waters. Chinook are migrating and feeding along the outer coast for the most part, so areas along coast are prime.
There's been a long history of moving the Sitka winter line in and out, but in my humble opinion, something has always been missing. We need a trigger. We have excellent staff over at troll division, we should trust them more with the responsibility to manage than what we do. Every year is different. If we move the line in in Sitka based on what happened last year, the mass that was there might not be, and we wind up leaving 25 k winter quota on the table because we can't catch them by the end of the winter season. I've always felt like there should be two, maybe even three lines all preplanned with the input of the guys who fish there. Once a trigger number is hit on the outter line, ADFG moves the line in to retard the catch to insure a full season. All outter area should be set up that way.
In the summer fishery, we simply cant continue to bang out our whole quota in less than a week. We need to have some of the known areas of high catch added to the list of already closed waters to slow down the catch rate. Again,,, there's some guys who made over 100 grand this last 5 days, and they're not going to appreciate me saying it, but the numbers don't lie. We need to redistributed the wealth and give everybody a better chance, in my humble opinion. The proposal to switch to 60/40 needs to be revisited too.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby Drew » Wed Jul 13, 2016 5:35 pm

yak2you2 wrote:Again,,, there's some guys who made over 100 grand this last 5 days, and they're not going to appreciate me saying it, but the numbers don't lie. We need to redistributed the wealth and give everybody a better chance, in my humble opinion. The proposal to switch to 60/40 needs to be revisited too.


Please no. The fair share of the king opener doesn't amount to shit. The people who make their living trolling expect to catch several times their share of the quota.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby carojae » Fri Jul 15, 2016 11:25 am

A couple more points.

1. "Hey, I'm ok with whatever we decide as a fleet".
Are you sure the fleet will show up to vote? How will you calculate the feedback received? Will you just accept the answers you want? Will this have a goal of 50%+1 of "the fleet" to be acceptable?

2. "Every year is different. If we move the line in in Sitka based on what happened last year, the mass that was there might not be, and we wind up leaving 25 k winter quota on the table because we can't catch them by the end of the winter season".
To be blunt, this is a irresponsible statement. The winter quota is only the first extension of the season that starts in October as a whole. I guarantee NO chinook will be left on the table because that's not how it works - it simply shifts to the summer season or the spring troll is extended.

I don't know Yak2you2. I admit to having trouble following your logic. But I see this as probably the most divisive topic since before the Handtoller was allowed membership into ATA; we don't need to separate ourselve again - we need unity.
Everyone has a right to these fish and it is not up to a few to decide the outcome of who can catch them or to take this issue to the BOF and say, "this is what the fleet wants".
We can do better.
In my opinion, this treaty has continually gave us the short side. This issue equally affects all fishermen even other gear groups outside the troll fishery. The State of Alaska is economically impacted and I think we need to be a little more creative on how to shift support to us Alaskans (and non-resident Alaskan fishermen) to garner some sympathy towards our cause in this state. The State of Alaska is certainly up to talk about how to get more money in our economy with our current fiscal dilemma. Opportunity knocks I'm thinking .

I am a paying member of ATA as a troller. I also pay dues for my land business to ATA. So I say, this issue you raise can be devastating by dividing us all. I say no and I hope the ATA membership can see it the same.
Finally, It also needs to be said that this is a unfair use of the ATA name and can result in unfair repercussions to ATA - not to mention future membership.
It's not right.

$0.02
Jim
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Fri Jul 15, 2016 4:44 pm

Ok,,,
1) This,,,is WHY I've asked ATA to moderate the calculation of the feedback. So we can have an impartial vote counter. there will be no accepting the answer " I" want, it will be a fair count. We know how many total trollers there are, and the information we receive will tell us all we need to know. If more than half the fleet respond, and we have a heavy weighted decision leaning one way or the other, it will be fair to call this an average of the fleet, and you then could fairly say, "this is what the majority of the fleet wants, or doesn't want". Even then, with a clear majority of will, it will ultimately be up to the ATA board to support a proposal to move more fish to winter. Thing is, they are not the only entity that can submit proposals, so the issue is likely to come up, so why not at least see how the majority of the fleet feels about it, to help make decision whether to support it?
2) Nothing irresponsible here. There is an established guideline harvest limit of 43,000 to 47,000 Chinook earmarked for the winter season. Yes, they will carry over to spring and summer if they go un caught, but why would we want them too? Theyre worth more to the fleet in the winter fishery. All i'm saying is, moving the Sitka line both in, and out, has been done before. It has the power to turn up the catch, or turn it down by doing so. Every time we visit it, it's derisive, and then, it's set in stone for at least 3 years until the next board of fish meeting, where we can duke it out, all over again. Why not let it float, and give the manager the power to regulate. If we hit a trigger number in any given month, this would mean that the catch level is to high to make it to the end of April, and the line would move in to slow things down. Vice versa. If things are looking slow, the line moves out. There has been several recent years where winter left 20-25K fish on the table. Whether you want to admit it or not, those fish were likely harvested by someone else in the summer fishery.
3) We ARE a house divide Carojae, always have been, make no mistake about it. Do you know how many handtrollers ATA has on the rolls? Not very many. Do you know why? I don't think it's because their lazy or stingy. I think it's because they don't feel represented fairly. Yeah, ATA goes to bat for us on the big ticket issues, and for that reason, I am a member too. ATA fights for fish at treaty, fights off the endless frivolous laws that get heaped on to us, helps protect watersheds, etc. But,,,when it comes to setting up rules to govern who gets a share of the pie, the littlest members of the fleet are NOT represented fairly, and they never have been. in my estimation, this would include small power trollers as well, and this group makes up the majority of the fleet. THIS,,,is why I have donated 7 years of my life to being a member. To try to shed light on this. Do you need a case in point? Here it is. All facts, which you are welcome to double check. In 2009 I took down a proposal to BOF, representing the Yakutat AC. ( I am also the chairmen). Our proposal was to allow for 4 lines for handtrollers West of Spencer in federal waters. Why? because power is allowed 6 lines in same said waters. Now, everybody knows that cranking 4 lines by hand for cohos when the bites on is a pretty tall order. The whole intent was to help get handtrollers a little more fairer piece of the summer king quota. After much discussion in committee, ATA ( which I wasn't a boardmember of just yet) threw out that they would support the proposal, but only if it wouldn't go into effect until after the July king opener.( this was what was ultimately adopted, by the way) I remember the words, they are burned into my soul. " king salmon are just to precious right now to entertain any new changes to how they are distributed." Are they any less precious to a handtroller do you figure? No let's go ahead and air this part out. As Drew calls it,,"people who are trying to make their living trolling." How many of you think that the majority of handtrollers are nothing but weekend warriors or otherwise less professional fishermen? I know a handfull who are weekenders, but the vast majority of the ones I know, and not just in my district, are hardcore full time fishermen. King salmon are every bit as precious to them, as they are to someone with a 5 man crew and 6 lines in the water. This same discussion carries over to whats the bigger problem in general. You don't see it, because your not on the loosing side, but statistics don't lie. 80% of the summer fish, are caught by just 20% of the boats. and if anybody says that this is because they are the "real" fishermen, I'm gonna puke. How many many big boats, out on notes, got totally left out in the cold this last 5 day opener because they were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time? The whole Fairweather fleet sounds like, for one.
We need a better way of spreading the summer fish out longer, and ultimately, that is going to spread the fish out better too. I know that sucks, if your one of the minority who has currently been scooping in a much larger than average share, which still isn't really all that much, but thats what unity looks like to me. To say that were all currently on the same team, when the majority of us didnt get to sell enough July kings to pay for fuel, is what I would call irresponsible.
We agree on one thing Carojae, the treaty is giving us the short side, and guess what, it will continue to. Go find out how it works. The treaty commissioners are bound by nothing. Even what is written can and has been ignored on occasion when theyve chosen too. They can do whatever they damn well want, and they are. We can fight it, and we should, but I sure wouldn't count on getting much. Even the commercial fishermen in their own state's are treated like outcasts by them.
I can't stress this enough,,,if it weren't for ATA, you already wouldn't even be fishing for Chinook in Alaska, anywhere but in front of a hatchery, period. For this reason, we all should be members, period. It's what comes after that, the cutting up the pie part that needs more attention. I am in no way speaking for ATA here, I am speaking as an individual who happens to be a boardmember, and nothing I've said here, isn't something I don't regularly say to all the boardmembers or any fishermen who will listen.
This is my last year as the handtroll representative. I've bought a power permit, and a bigger boat, and sold my handtroll operation. However, until my term is complete, I will say exactly what I feel like needs to be said. Do I feel like we should stay in status quo so 20% of you can continue to squeak by? Sorry, I don't. Do I feel like rules and season lengths should be tilted towards giving a guy who makes 100% of his living a better chance than guy who only fishes part of the time? Nope, sorry, I don't agree with this either. A permit bought, is a permit bought.
Will there be many, many guys like me, with many new proposals to change things at the next BOF? I would count on it.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby SilverT » Fri Jul 15, 2016 6:44 pm

Yak,

I'm not an Alaskan (perhaps I am at heart), but couldn't let the swipe at southerners pass without a little friendly kickback. I did a brief fact check on, "One hundred percent of the hatchery fish from down South, which is mostly what we catch, is paid for, 100% of it,,with U.S. tax dollars. They are all OUR fish,,, and WE have fed them for longer than you." The 100% portion of the statement is incorrect in that some of our hatchery funding comes from State dollars, Washington State tax dollars. I haven't heard any pirate comments for many years. I also don't take a side in the discussion, but have been thinking about it and throw in a couple of observations for consideration.

The opener before last allowed Washington trollers 15 kings in our area with zero coho retention as the quota wound down. We had to run 36 miles to get to a legal area that had fish. We had 14 fish in the boat and needed one more. Fishing was slow so we left all four wires down. When we pulled the gear, the first wire had 4 kings. To get 1 fish, we ended up releasing 12 by the time we pulled it all in, the last one around 20 lbs. That's frustrating. It would be many times more frustrating if we had a larger boat. We are now allowed 60 kings in four, every other week openers spread through July and August with zero coho retention. We caught 15 kings in the first of those four openers due to lack of time off, weather, scattered fish and skill level.

The Washington fishery is tailored in the summer to be spread out over time to accommodate the fresh market. We have a difficult time not being for it because we have a smaller boat, but it does negatively affect larger boats whose whole operation and expenses are geared for high volumes. When weekly quotas dip below a level reasonable for most large boats, 42+ feet, to fish, which is often the case during the summer, they quit and go albacore fishing or head to AK. It seems that larger boats are more numerous in AK and Alaska doesn't to my knowledge have a similar albacore option.

A dribbled quota does, however, appear to have an effect on the price in Washington. We were still getting $9 per lb. at the end of June to private wholesale buyers with higher offers, but we had committed. When we told buyers we were going to every other week, requests for fish went up and one price offered was 0.50 cents more than any other buyer was paying. The fact that AK scoops up their quota works very well for the South because fresh buyers can only keep AK fish fresh for a week prior to freezing. Then fresh buyers return to the few fish the 160 Washington permit holders are allowed to catch. A dribbled quota also has an effect on the amount of reporting required from fishermen and requires an increased level of management at the State level.

I'd like to see higher prices and satisfied fishermen along the entire coast. I know very little about AK dynamics but it is a sincere and friendly caution to be careful what you implement in the quest for fairness. I grow weary of boundaries, having to call in prior to crossing them in both directions, being forced to fish 30 miles from port for 15 fish, chastisements from WDFW for missing information on archaic reporting forms, hyper-management, barbless hooks, and keeping only fin-clipped coho because releasing "wild" coho is the secret to Washington's amazing, now nearly non-existent coho returns. I greatly appreciate your sense of fairness, appreciate your passion and hard work and wish you well in your continued effort to improve the industry.

Respectfully,

Lane
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby yak2you2 » Fri Jul 15, 2016 7:58 pm

Silver T, I can't make it clear enough that in no way was I swiping at down south trollers with the pirate comments. I feel for you boys, I really do. My frustration lies with the hordes and hordes of sport enthusiasts that make those comments. I've been over and visited their chatrooms. That, and extremely frustrated by the Southern Treaty commissioners that are hell bend on not giving Alaska a fair deal.We have bent over backwards when needed to help recovering stocks, and every time we give something up for a little while, might as well kiss it good bye, because you'll NEVER get it back. There are numerous examples.
The trip limits you fellas live with has never sounded fun to me, like I said, I'm deeply sympathetic. I am a life long Alaskan, freedom is something I cherish above all else, so the last thing I want is to entertain more restrictions. The question is though, at what point do we have to take a hard look at where our statewide industry is going? Right now, it would be fair to say that the overall quota basically belongs to a handful of boats. Sure, we all get to go for a few days, but the reality is, the vast majority of us will see damn few,,,and it's getting worse. Last year we oopsed the whole summer quota, July, and August's fish and then some,in a week. This year, 5 day July opener. and remains to be seen how many we took. How small does it have to get, before we address it? 3 days, 2 days? How long will it be before we have a storm fall on July 1st, and we lose a bunch of our boys because they have no choice but to go where they shouldn't? We have no fish apparently to allow for different users to be treated fairly, i.e.- the mentioned 6 lines vs. 4 lines issue. We have no fish to allow for expanding winter a little bit. At what point do we say enough, lets redo the system? I know, 100k fish just got caught, so there's bound to be some guys who caught them who are quite happy about it who are going to say, " hey, it's working fine, leave it alone!" But again I'll say it, the vast majority didn't pay for fuel. What do we say to the serious full time fishermen with a 250K operation on the cuff, who went way out, did all he could do, and caught nothing in our dice roll fishery, better luck next year kid?
Nobody wanted to entertain the concept of haibut IFQ either, but there simply was no way around it. I can see no way around this either. Leave out that were decimating our own markets with a flood of Chinook, when is someone going to ask the question is it even healthy for the fish to do it this way? Which river's fish happened to land under the wheels of the machine at the wrong time this year? will they get enough for seed?
I don't know what the ultimate answer is to fixing it. is it IFQ, trip limits, closing down more high production outside areas? I don't know. All I do know is, it's a mess right now.
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby SilverT » Sat Jul 16, 2016 6:41 am

Yak,

Thanks for the clarification. We deal with the same sports mind-set, that because I own a sport boat and buy a $30 license, I am entitled to more fish than the general public. Also, if in your discussions and research, you itemize AK's unrestored concessions, it may be good to post the list or point to it if you have in the past. Best wishes for all.

Respectfully,

Lane
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby John Murray » Sun Jul 17, 2016 9:55 am

Yak You didn't make the last BOF in Sitka ,it was educational in number of ways.One thing that stuck out to me is the make up of the fleet or makeup of ATA board.Every area has different issues and needs.As Mark from Petesrburg said I support a 60/40 but the guys he represents don't as much.That leaves us with things we can change which benifit the fleet in whole.There isn't much of those changes available because of the good work already done over the years.

Will the winter fishery change when we go into a low abundance time period?O
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby John Murray » Sun Jul 17, 2016 9:57 am

Sorry bout that.One of the thing that really rather new is the pumping out of
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Re: Alaska winter Chinook changes

Postby John Murray » Sun Jul 17, 2016 10:15 am

of fin clipped hatchery fish from the Columbia.Those fish in abundance help fill all the seasons quicker.Do they really need the glut of those fish in river?I think whoever came up with the idea of putting some of those fish into our fishery with out being counted is a good idea.Will down south folks agree?It would seem it would mess up their management also.Last year with 1.3 million fall chinook going thru the Bonniville dam, that seems rather excessive.Somebody needed to harvest more of those.

I guess what I"m saying is what can we agree on ?Because there is much we can't agree on.

Again thanks for your thoughts.
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