NEETS BAY's FISHERIES Hotline Information is available... call 228-4399 UPDATED 8/12
Seiner F/V Barbara B. ties up to a Ketchikan harbor while waiting for Thursday's District 102 opening.
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Recent Spawning News:
SSRAA is Opening the Neets Bay SHA to Rotational Fisheries:
The Neets Bay SHA will open to a unique rotational fishery on Wednesday 13 August. Please see the ADF&G announcement made this afternoon, Tuesday 12 August. There are in essence two distinct fisheries as follows:
Exclusive to troll: the SHA from Bug Island to the Mid Bay Line will be open exclusively to troll until closed by EO;
Rotational Fishery in the Inner SHA (Please refer to the ADF&G announcement for specific date and time):
1. the area from the Mid Bay Line to the Buoy A/Marker A Line (rotation area) will be open to troll for 48 hours:
2. the rotation area from the Mid Bay Line to the Buoy A/Marker A Line will then be open to seine for 24 hours;
3. troll for 24 hours;
4. gill net for 24 hours;
5. troll for 24 hours.
6. Seine, troll, gill net, troll, seine…etc.
7. The same pattern will continue until the SHA is closed by ADF&G Emergency Order on 26 August.
The rotational area of the SHA will be open to the barrier seine once we are confident we have made our egg take goal of about 140 million eggs. The area from the Buoy A/Marker A line to the barrier serves as a broodstock sanctuary until the egg take goal is met.
This rotational fishery will end, and the Neets SHA will close when fall chum enter the fishery – 26 August. The fall chum run is going to be very weak this year, with almost half the return forecast required for broodstock. The SHA will remain closed until fall chum eggs are collected. At that point, sometime in the third week of September, we will open the SHA to net rotations as we have in past years.
1. Several years ago we opened the SHA because of an abundance of fish beyond SSRAA’s needs. This is opening is occurring because of SSRAA Board Policy; because the SSRAA cost recovery goal is met we will open the SHA. There are not many summer chums in the SHA at this time. There are some fish to catch, but the summer chum run is on its last legs.
2. If the SHA is open to the barrier, be cautious when fishing around the barrier seine. If the barrier is breached it will effectively end this fishery as the fish will enter the area behind the barrier – where in essence they are wasted. Repairs will be necessary and expensive, and we can’t always get them quickly done.
Due to a near collapse of Alaska’s commercial salmon industry in the early 1970’s from consecutive years of low salmon abundance, commercial fishermen in partnership with the state of Alaska drafted legislation that allowed the formation of Regional Aquaculture Associations. The regional associations were allowed to levy an assessment on commercial fishermen’s sale of salmon harvested within the association’s fishing districts to help support and pay off debt on loans for needed infrastructure. Hatcheries were necessary to hatch and raise juvenile salmon for release to the open ocean. This partnership between private not-for-profit corporations and a public entity was unique to Alaska, and success of this ocean ranching program was not assured.
Southern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association (SSRAA) is one of the five original associations incorporated in 1976. In the beginning small groups of committed fishermen joined by a few dedicated citizens kept the vision of SSRAA alive and nurtured the fledgling corporation through the initial “trial years”. Over three decades have now gone by and Alaska’s salmon enhancement program, made up of regional associations as well as other private non-profit hatcheries, collectively brings hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue to the state’s economy. As part of Alaska’s Enhancement Program, SSRAA continues to succeed in producing a greater abundance of salmon to the common property waters of southeast Alaska for the economic and social benefit of all its user groups..