2016 Togiak Herring Season Early and Underfunded
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] By Peggy Parker - May 26, 2016
The 2016 Togiak herring season started early and ended early with an aggregate 11 percent exploitation, or harvest rate, rather than the usual maximum of 20 percent.
About 75 percent of the purse seine catch limit was taken before it became clear that the catch was showing more younger fish, something the Alaska Department of Fish and Game's management plan tries to avoid to protect younger year classes.
“The department decided to shut the fishery down before the quota was harvested because of concerns of decreasing fish size. Based on processor production data, the department decided on April 29 that the proportion of age 6 and younger fish was exceeding 30% of the harvest and that fishing should stop,” the ADF&G final season report explained.
Budget cuts prevented routine sampling being done as the herring are delivered. So there was no age, length, weight, or sex data collected from this year’s harvest.
The pre-season surveys had been eliminated by budget cuts, but the processors provided enough funds for...Full Story »