Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Alaska Commercial Salmon Harvest Tops 107 Million Fish

The 2012 preliminary harvest count of Alaska’s pink, sockeye, coho, chum and Chinook salmon grew to 107,087,000 fish for the week ended Aug. 17. State biologists said the humpy harvest led the way with an additional 15,758,000 fish, boosting the overall harvest of pink salmon to 54,766,000 pinks. The sockeye harvest rose by 253,000 fish to 34,939,000, the chum harvest by 870,000 to 15,736,000 fish, the silver harvest by 277,000 fish to 1,429,000 fish, and the king harvest by 7,000 fish for a total of 217,000 Chinooks.

The preliminary harvest total still has a way to go to meet the preseason statewide forecast of 132.1 million salmon of all species.

The humpy harvest got plenty of help from commercial fishermen in Prince William Sound, where the pink catch alone rose from 18,190,000 to 22,597,000 fish. State biologists there said they anticipated that the purse seine fleet’s effort would be focused this week on the Prince William Sound Aquaculture Corp.’s remaining pink salmon run. Weather has not appeared to limit fishing efforts in Prince William Sound so far this season.

In Kodiak, the humpy harvest rose from 9,439,000 to 13,914,000 fish, and the silver salmon harvest jumped from 44,000 to 78,000 cohos, while harvests of chum, and sockeye salmon grew at a slower pace.

Fred Meyer supermarkets in Anchorage meanwhile had a sale going for the week beginning Aug. 18 of whole silver salmon at $5.99 a pound. A number of Internet marketers also were offering sockeye, king and other Alaska salmon for sale. FishEx in Anchorage was asking $36.95 a pound for frozen Copper River king fillets and $24.95 a pound for frozen Copper River sockeye fillets, while Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle had whole fresh wild Alaska kings for $14.99 a pound, king fillets for $22.99 a pound, whole coho for $7.99 a pound and silver fillets for $13.99 a pound.

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