Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Alaska Wild Salmon Catch Tops 4 Million Fish and Growing

Alaska Department of Fish and Game preliminary statistics show that a total of 4,094,000 wild Alaska salmon were harvested through June 17, including 3.1 million sockeyes, 862,000 chums, 55,000 kings, 44,000 pinks and 3,000 coho. Just one week earlier the statewide total was 1.7 million wild salmon, including 1,050,000 reds, 694,000 chums, 17,000 kings and less than 1,000 each of coho and pink salmon.

Economists specializing in fish harvests are forecasting a good year price-wise, thanks to worldwide demand, the strength of the Euro and Japanese yen against the dollar and still recovering Chilean farmed salmon markets.

In the Copper River the harvest as of June 17, the latest date for which statewide preliminary totals were available, was 1,038,000 reds, 16,000 kings and 11,000 chum salmon. The historical five-year cumulative harvest for the Copper River for that week was 550,000 sockeyes and 16,700 kings, state officials said.

Harvesters in Chignik meanwhile had a harvest of 814,000 sockeyes, 12,000 chums, plus fewer than 1,000 kings. In the South Alaska Peninsula fishermen harvested 542,000 reds, 126,000 chums, 41,000 pinks and about 3,000 kings, and on the North side of the Peninsula the catch was 22,000 reds.

Kodiak harvesters brought in 437,000 reds and 22,000 chums.

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