Three more days remain in the 2020 Upper Cook Inlet Board of Fisheries meeting and if you believe in conservation, and are a personal use/sport fisherman, you have to be excited with the changes so far.
Here are a few of the highlights.
The Kenai River will see an increase of the in river escapement goals for sockeye and king salmon. This will allow more salmon on the spawning beds. Another important change to the Kenai River management was rescinding the current 1% rule and restoring the original 1% rule put in place during the 2014 Board cycle. Without getting too deep into the weeds, the change to the 1% rule will reduce commercial harvest of silver salmon.
The Matanuska-Susitna Valley has perhaps been the biggest winner for conservation and changes to personal use/sport fisheries. Following an allocation change to the Kodiak intercept fishery, the Board of Fisheries continued to change regulations and placed restrictions on commercial harvest in the central corridor of Cook Inlet. This will allow more salmon to reach more rivers in the Valley. In addition, the Board opened up a new opportunity for Alaska residents to harvest fish for themselves. Starting this July, dipnetting will be allowed in the lower Susitna River. A friend of mine, who lives in this area, is very happy that he can dipnet in his backyard rather than make the ten hour, round trip drive to the Kenai River to do it.
The remaining three days of the Board of Fisheries meeting will take up commercial, and sport guiding issues. Come back to the blog next week and I’ll give you my opinion/analysis of the final days.
See you then.