Bad outlook for upcoming Bering Sea crab fisheries

rawsurveydatacrab2016-300x215The summer survey results have not been good for either Bering Sea snow (opilio) or tanner (Bairdi) crab. For 2015-16, snow crab landings from both the IFQ and CDQ fisheries were 40.61 million pounds, a 40% cut from 67.9 million lbs in 2014-15. For Bairdi the 2015-16 quota was 19.64 million pounds, which helped make up some of the shortfall. But the snow crab market reacted quickly to the cut in Alaskan snow crab, and prices rose throughout the year, including when Canada’s larger fishery opened.  Industry participants think 2016-17 may be worse. This has now been confirmed with the raw survey data just released by Dr. Bob Foy of the Kodiak Fisheries Science Laboratory showing that legal male biomass has declined in all of the major crab fisheries. Legal male biomass in the crab fisheries declined across the board, with the largest declines in Opilio.  The survey also measures the abundance of female crabs; all these numbers go into determining appropriate fishing levels. Read the story here 13:43


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