Preseason vessel registrations are underway for the 2014-2015 fisheries in Bristol Bay red king crab, Eastern Bering Sea Tanner crab, Western Bering Sea Tanner crab and Bering Sea snow crab.
Forms for preseason vessel registration and a list of vessels already registered is online at www.adfg.alaska.gov/cfregion4/dynamic/shellfish/management/vesreg/index
Through Aug. 20, 18 vessels were registered for the Bristol Bay red king crab fishery, 13 for the Eastern Bering Sea Tanner crab fishery, 13 for the Western Bering Sea Tanner crab fishery, and 17 for the Bering Sea snow crab fishery.
All preregistration forms must be completed and received by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game by Sept. 24. A Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission permit card is not required to preseason register.
Vessels that have completed preseason registration in all four of these crab fisheries are listed online in random-order by fishery. ADF&G officials said that vessels would be chosen from the top of the roster for observer coverage to achieve the target level of coverage in each fishery. Vessels that are selected to carry observers will be named in a news release on or before Sept. 26. Catcher vessel observer coverage for these fisheries is contracted and paid for by ADF&G.
Selected catcher vessels will be required to carry a crab observer 100 percent of the time each vessel is engaged in the fishery. In addition to catcher vessels selected to carry an observer, ADF&G will maintain an alternate list of vessels for potential observer coverage in each fishery. Should the alternate list be exhausted during a fishery, all vessels active in the fishery may be considered, ADF&G officials said.
Crab processing vessels are required to carry a crab observer 100 percent of the time that crab is being processed. Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands crab processing vessels must arrange and pay for their own observer coverage.