Thursday, June 25, 2009

North Coast Salmon Update #2

Please find copied below the North Coast Salmon Update #2 just received from the DFO Area Chief of Resource Management, Prince Rupert.

North Coast Salmon Update – Thursday, June 25, 2009

Please note that in-season updates always deal in preliminary numbers. Usually these change somewhat upon receipt and analysis of all the data.

Area 3 – First Canadian commercial sockeye fishery took place June 16 for 16 hours, with 3-12 closed. First Alaskan fishery at Tree Point opened for four days starting Sunday June 21.

Date Gear Count Total Catch Average

June 16 146 gill nets 6795 sockeye 47 sockeye

June 23 224 gill nets 5773 sockeye 26 sockeye

Expected Nass sockeye return to Canada is 515,000. 325,000 are reserved for escapement needs and fulfilling FSC and treaty requirements. This leaves approximately 190,000 available for commercial harvest. Of these, approximately 75% are expected to be harvested by gill net, and 25% by seine (this is approximate only, because the allocative split actually includes the Skeena and Nass combined). Therefore, the expectations are:

TAC Gill net GN Average Seine SN Average

190,000 142,500 217 sockeye 47,500 436

Catch to date: 12,568 gill net

Expected remaining catch: Gill net 129,932 (av. 197) Sn 47,500 (av. 436)

Area 4 – Tyee test fishery began operations May 25. However, all cumulative indices were zeroed starting June 10, to enable comparisons between this year and previous years (June 10 being the usual starting date).

Chinook Fishery:

Date Gear Count Total Catch Average

June 13 88 gill nets 1102 Chinook 13 Chinook

June 19 103 gill nets 1336 Chinook 13 Chinook

This ends the directed Chinook gill net fishery for 2009.

Expected sockeye run size to Skeena pre-season is 2,000,000. However, sockeye escapement as estimated at the Tyee test fishery is low so far, only about 1/3 of what we would expect at this time for a 2M run size. It is too early to make any changes to our pre-season forecast though.

Skeena Management Actions
No commercial fishing is planned for the coming week.

Skeena River demonstration fishery
This fishery is linked to the commercial sockeye fishery in Management Area 4, and so will not begin until the tidal water commercial sockeye fishery has started.

Area 8 –These fisheries are directed at Atnarko Chinook:

June 01 - 27 gill nets; 189 Chinook

June 08 - 44 gill nets; 144 Chinook

June 15 - 39 gill nets; 298 Chinook.

June 23 - 40 gill nets; 523 Chinook, 133 chum.

Commercial catch and in stream assessment remains consistent with a below average Chinook return. Chum catch to date not useful for in season assessment of return.

North Coast troll – An over flight was conducted on June 17th observing 88 troll vessels operating with the majority concentrated along the NW Corner around Langara Island and the North shore of Graham Island in Area 101 down to Tian Head. In comparison a total of 86 trollers were observed during the opening week in 2008 with similar distribution.

Projected catch results to the end of Friday June 19 suggests an approximate harvest of 12,000 Chinook against the TAC of 93,000 Chinook.

DNA samples are in the process of being obtained and some information may be available at the end of next week. The limitation requirement on the harvest of WCVI Chinook remains as in previous years at 3.2% of the return to Canada which equates to 2,860 pieces.

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