Tag Archives: Aleutian Islands

Crab crash: Effects of collapsed Bering Sea crab stocks are being felt far beyond the fleet

The crash in Bering Sea crab stocks is translating to serious impacts for fishermen and communities across the Western Alaska coast. From the top, the Bristol Bay red king crab fishery is closed entirely this season for the first time since the 1990s, while the Bering Sea snow crab total allowable catch was reduced by nearly 90 percent. In the meantime, fishermen who depend on crab are dealing with the fallout of those cuts this year. Gabriel Prout of Kodiak was waiting out a storm in the Akutan harbor last week, after finishing up his snow crab season. The F/V Silver Spray, the vessel he owns with his father and brothers, was only able to go out for 100,000 pounds of snow crab. Of that, they only caught about 75,000 pounds because the fishing was so slow; they traded the rest of the quota for bairdi and headed south. >click to read< 17:39

NPFMC ties limits on Bering Sea trawlers to halibut abundance

The council that manages fishing in federal waters voted to link groundfish trawl fishing in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands to halibut abundance today. The action caps, at least for now, a six-year debate about curbing halibut bycatch in Alaska. For many who have been following that debate, the decision comes as a surprise, since it’s expected to deal what trawlers say is a crushing blow to their fishery. >click to read< 09:10

Coronavirus cases detected at Alaska seafood plant

Seattle-based Trident Seafoods reports that four workers at the company’s Akutan, Alaska, seafood plant have tested positive for coronavirus, including one who had difficulty breathing and had to be evacuated by air to a hospital in Anchorage. The Akutan plant in the Aleutian Islands is a processing hub for Bering Sea harvests of pollock, crab and cod, with a workforce of 700 employees that will swell in the weeks ahead to 1,400 people. >click to read< 07:29

Humpy harvest in PWS surges to exceed 12M fish

Harvests of over 9 million pink salmon over the past week have pushed Alaska’s yearly total to over 25 million fish, including upwards of 12 million humpies caught in Prince William Sound. Alaska Department of Fish and Game finfish area management biologists in Cordova said the cumulative pink salmon harvest in the Sound through Aug. 1 alone was estimated at 10.5 million common property fish and 1.5 cost recovery fish. Preliminary commercial salmon harvest data compiled by ADF&G through Tuesday, Aug. 4, put the total commercial salmon harvest in Prince William Sound at 11.2 million fish, including 12.3 million pink, 1.9 million chum, 902,000 sockeye, 4,000 coho and 4,000 king salmon. >click to read< 19:03

Bristol Bay Native Corporation to acquire two giants of Alaska’s Pacific cod fishery

Clipper Seafoods and Blue North Fisheries are freezer longline catchers, two giants of the Pacific cod industry. Clipper has six hook and line vessels, and after retiring one of its vessels, Blue North will have four. Now, the Bristol Bay Native Corporation is poised to acquire all of them. “Blue North and Clipper Seafoods, as of Friday last week, have officially merged together. And then BBNC’s intentions are to acquire the merged companies – the Blue North Clipper Group – on Sept. 30.” Audio,  >click to read< 18:20

NPFMC takes first step toward rationalizing P-cod fishery

Pacific cod fishermen in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands, one of the last remaining unrationalized federal fisheries in Alaska, may finally have to cross that bridge. The North Pacific Fishery Management Council passed a motion at its meeting Feb. 9 to take action on the Pacific cod fishery, which is facing a number of issues in abundance, processing and participation. Depending on public review and the council’s action at the next several meetings, the Pacific cod fishery could see significant changes to seasons, limits and vessel participation. The motion hinges around an analysis developed on the trawl catcher vessel fishery and releases Alternatives 1, 2, 3 and 6 for public review separate from the rest. Rationalization, also known as catch shares,,, >click to read<

Ten-Year Review for Bering Sea/ Aleutian Islands Crab Ratz Management Program

1-5cafb4e98eNorth Pacific Fishery Management Council June 2016 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   This document is a 10 year review of the Bering Sea/ Aleutian Islands (BSAI) Crab Rationalization (CR) Program. Implemented in 2005, the CR Program is a “voluntary three pie cooperative” program which allocates BSAI crab resources among harvesters, processors, and coastal communities. The CR Program was designed to address conservation and management issues associated with the previous over-capitalized derby fishery, reduce bycatch and associated discard mortality, and increase the safety of crab fishermen by ending the race for fish. The program issued harvest quota shares to vessel owners (License Limitation Program license holders) and captains, as well as processor quota shares to processors based on historic participation to protect investment in and reliance on the program fisheries. Program components include quota share allocation, processor quota share allocation, individual fishing quota and individual processing quota issuance, quota transfers, use caps, crab harvesting cooperatives, protections for Gulf of Alaska groundfish fisheries, an arbitration system, monitoring, economic data collection, and cost recovery fee collection. Read it here 18:32

Big groundfish harvest boosts Alaska seafood employment

trends-labor-groundfish-pngEmployment in Alaska’s commercial fishing sector grew last year, boosted by a  swell in groundfish harvests, state labor economists reported today. Driven by large catches of pollock and cod in the Gulf of Alaska, Bering Sea, and Aleutian Islands, the number of commercial fishing jobs in Alaska grew by .7 percent in 2014, according to the Alaska Department of Labor. Jobs specifically tied to groundfish jumped by nearly 25 percent, or about 350 jobs, with gains made during every month of the year. Read the rest here 09:47

Aleutians monument labeled threat, derided as ‘straw man’

No FishingAlaska Congressman Don Young and other Republicans on the House Natural Resources Committee Tuesday morning attacked the idea that President Obama might create a marine national monument around the Aleutian Islands, with unknown effects on the fishing industry. “I’ve watched this over and over: The creeping cancer of the federal government overreaching,” Young said. “The worst managers of any resource is the federal government. They do not manage. They preclude.” The idea of protecting the waters of the Aleutian Chain came from environmentalist and retired UAA professor Rick Steiner. Read the rest here 10:38

Hands off the Aleutian Islands

thCAWQFEFIPublic Employees for Environmental Responsibility submitted a nomination to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for a marine sanctuary around the islands in December. It is supported by environmental groups, including some in Alaska, according to Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski. While that could take a long while, the environmental groups are hoping to draw this proposal to President Obama’s attention — undoubtedly hoping for a national monument designation. Read the rest here 10:53

Aleutian Islands Nominated as National Marine Sanctuary

The waters around the Aleutian Islands support a dizzying range of wildlife — and major industries right along with it. Right now, the government’s job is to help find a balance. But as KUCB’s Lauren Rosenthal reports, there’s a new campaign to permanently tip the scales toward conservation in the Aleutian Chain. Read the rest here NOMINATION OF ALEUTIAN ISLANDS NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY … Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility … nominated for National Marine Sanctuary pfd here …17:19

Vessel replacement, Steller sea lions and crab on menu. The North Pacific Fishery Management Council meets Oct. 3-9 in Anchorage

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council, which meets Oct. 3-9 in  Anchorage, is poised to act on a vessel replacement plan, as well as discuss  Steller sea lions and the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands crab and groundfish  fisheries. Halibut management and observation will also be on the table.

The council is slated for final action on a vessel replacement program for  freezer longline licenses authorized for Pacific cod in the Bering Sea and  Aleutian Islands.

Read more: http://www.alaskajournal.com/Alaska-Journal-of-Commerce/September-Issue-5-2012/Vessel-replacement-Steller-sea-lions-and-crab-on-menu/#ixzz27mGtbFfA

Fisheries activist says giant processors exploit locals in the Aleutians

UNALASKA — David Osterback says the Aleutian region could use a good regional cookbook, combining the recipes from local cookbooks already published in area villages, especially seafood dishes. Osterback spoke at a fisheries workshop at the Regional Wellness and Self-Governance Conference in Unalaska last week, sponsored by the Aleutian Pribilof Island Association.

“Who’s catching the fish? Everybody in the world except the people who live here,” said Osterback.

Processors earning big bucks

http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/fisheries-activist-says-giant-processors-exploit-locals-aleutians