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The United Cook Inlet Drift Association (UCIDA) was incorporated in 1980 to represent the 570 drift gillnet salmon fishing permit holders in Alaska’s Cook Inlet. UCIDA’s purpose is to enhance and perpetuate the interests of this valuable commercial salmon fishing industry.

Wild Alaskan salmon have been commercially harvested in Cook Inlet since 1882. Over the past twenty years, the drift gillnet fishing fleet has harvested more than 271 million pounds of salmon, primarily sockeye salmon. The combined efforts of the drift and set gillnet fisheries in Upper Cook Inlet have produced average annual harvests of over 23 million pounds of wild salmon for the American and world markets during the past twenty years. Five percent of the world’s supply of sockeye salmon comes from Cook Inlet.

UCIDA’s Board of Directors and staff work to promote responsible management to ensure the long-term health of this abundant salmon resource and the resulting opportunities and benefits it provides. The day-to-day work of UCIDA covers an extremely broad range of issues that ultimately affect salmon, their harvest and marketing. These may include fishery management, invasive species, oil and gas lease sales, navigation issues, endangered species acts, oil spill response, local, state and federal regulatory issues and both state and federal litigation.

The nine members of the Board of Directors serve staggered three-year terms. Elections are held at annual membership meetings. Members (Upper Cook Inlet drift gillnet permit holders) and Associate Members are encouraged to attend all Board meetings.

 

 

Office Manager – Audrey Salmon – info@ucida.org

Board of Directors

David MartinPresidentF/V Kaguyak
Erik Huebsch1st VPF/V Williwaw
Ian Pitzman2nd VPF/V Stephanie Anne
Dino SutherlandSec/TreasF/V Rivers End
Ilia KuzminDirectorF/V Currency
John McCombsDirectorF/V Rayo Verde
Paul MackieDirectorF/V Lorrie Lee
Steve TvenstrupDirectorF/V Alaskan Lady
Dyer VanDevereDirectorF/V Swift Arrow

 


43961 K-Beach Road, Suite E
Soldotna, Alaska
(907) 260-9436

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May 27, 2016

KASILOF RIVER SPECIAL USE AREA
NORTH SIDE FINAL SITE PLAN

The Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Division of Mining, Land and Water, Southcentral Regional Office (SCRO) has approved a final site plan for the north side of the Kasilof River. The final site plan was developed using public and agency feedback received during the 2015 and 2016 comment periods.

Thank you to everyone that participated by attending public meetings and providing written comments during the public and agency review periods. The initial site concept plan aimed at maximizing parking was released for comment for 45-days on October 15, 2015. The majority of the 43 comments received opposed this concept and specifically requested additional opportunities for public involvement. As a result, the SCRO developed four additional site concept plans and initiated another 33-day public review on February 18, 2016. The SCRO conducted public meetings in Anchorage, Wasilla and Kasilof during this review period and received a total of 62 comments.

The final site plan approved by DNR is a combination of site concept plans 1 and 3 which substantially scales back the proposed development within U.S. Survey 83 based on public and agency feedback. A combination of parking, pedestrian access, dune fencing, and a small wildlife viewing platform are planned along with protecting the wetlands and improving traffic flow for personal use fishers and emergency service vehicles. For additional information, please visit the Kasilof Rivers Public Use Area website at: dnr.alaska.gov/mlw/kasilof/. Any questions about the final site plan should be directed to either: Adam Smith at 907-269-8557, adam.smith@alaska.gov or Christy Colles at 907-269-8116, christianna.colles@alaska.gov. Thank you for taking the time to participate in this important public project.

Christy Colles
Natural Resource Manager I
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Alaska Department of Natural Resources
Division of Mining, Land and Water
Southcentral Regional Land Office
Shore Fish Program
550 W. 7th Ave., Suite 900C
Anchorage, AK 99501

Phone: (907) 269-8116
Fax: (907) 269-8913
Website: dnr.alaska.gov/mlw/
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Alaska Fisheries Value and Volume Again Lead in NOAA Seafood Economics Report

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Alaska Journal of Commerce] By DJ Summers - May 27, 2016

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its annual report detailing national and regional economic impacts of U.S. fisheries and, as usual, Alaska produced both the greatest value and volume of any area.

The report includes economic impacts in the harvesting, processing, wholesale, retail, and import sectors, as well as those from recreational saltwater fishing.

In 2014, the nation’s commercial seafood industry produced 1.4 million full-and part-time jobs, $153 billion in sales (including imports), $42 billion in income and $64 billion in value-added impacts. Domestic harvests produced $54 billion in sales.

Alaska’s seafood industry employs more people than any other private industry in the state. California supported most of the nation’s 1.4 million seafood jobs in 2014 with 143,440. Alaska’s industry supported 60,749 jobs.

NOAA oversees all fisheries in U.S. waters from three to 200 miles off the coast, with management rules crafted by eight regional councils created under the 1976 Magnuson-Stevens Act.

In 2014, U.S commercial fishermen harvested a total market value of $9.4 billion worth of finfish and shellfish, worth $5.5 billion in dockside value to fishermen.

The U.S. most valuable seafood product in 2014 was shrimp, which represents $702 million in market value. Pacific salmon came in second, representing $617 million in overall value. Lobster and scallops came in third and fourth, representing $567 million and $424 million, respectively.

North Pacific fisheries, dominated by walleye pollock and Pacific salmon, accounted for the greatest volume and value of the eight regions.

NOAA separates seafood into finfish and shellfish. Finfish includes groundfish like walleye pollock.

Alaska caught the most finfish, representing 68 percent of the nation’s total. California produced the most shellfish with 260 million pounds, followed by Louisiana and Maine’s shrimp and lobster catches.

In volume terms, pollock produced three times more sheer poundage than the next species, menhaden. Fishermen in the North Pacific harvested 3.1 billion pounds of walleye pollock in 2014, around 55 percent of the region’s total seafood landings.

Pacific salmon’s value adds to pollock’s volume to make the North Pacific region the U.S. seafood industry’s largest. Of the $5.5 billion in nationwide dockside revenue, the North Pacific region produced $1.7 billion, or 31 percent of the total. Half came of that from Pacific salmon and pollock revenue.

North Pacific fishermen made the most income from salmon, pollock, and crab in 2014. For Alaska fishermen, the three species comprised 69 percent of the region’s total value. Salmon produced the most revenue with $546 million, followed by $400 million from pollock and $238 million from crab.

North Pacific waters did display some marked reductions in certain seafood, however. From 2013 to 2014, the overall halibut harvest declined by 70 percent, and the Pacific sablefish harvest declined by 31 percent. Pacific salmon landings declined by 33 percent, attributable mainly to the difference between 2013 pink salmon — one of the largest harvests on record — and the corresponding down cycle in 2014. Pink salmon run strong every other year.

Recreational fisheries also played a large role in the U.S. marine economy, though Alaska’s numbers make a small amount of the national participation.

Nationwide, 11 million anglers participated in U.S. saltwater recreational fisheries, taking a total 68 million trips.

The recreational fisheries created $60.6 billion in sales impacts from fishing trips and related equipment, a 4 percent increase.

Jobs supported by recreational saltwater fisheries were concentrated heavily in Florida and California, which together represent 31 percent of overall jobs.

Alaska supported 1.2 percent of these jobs.



Ken Coons
SeafoodNews.com 1-781-861-1441
Email comments to kencoons@comcast.net
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State, Tribes Finally Agree to Puget Sound Salmon Seasons

SEAFOOD.COM NEWS [Seattle Times] By Mark Yuasa/HalL Bernton - May 27, 2016

State and tribal officials have reached agreement for Puget Sound salmon seasons, which is expected to result in reopening of sport fisheries in the weeks ahead.

State Fish and Wildlife and tribal officials have agreed on a management plan for 2016-2017 Puget Sound salmon fisheries, ending a stalemate that threatened to scuttle seasons for sport anglers, tribal and nontribal commercial fishermen.

The agreement must be approved by federal officials, but anglers likely will soon get to hit the marine waterways to pursue salmon and other fish stocks.

This year, all fishermen — tribal and nontribal — will face leaner seasons to help conserve weak wild coho and chinook salmon runs listed under the federal Endangered Species Act.

This year’s negotiations were the most protracted in history, stretching far deeper into the spring than in the past three decades of such talks.

The talks are an outgrowth of the federal court’s 1974 Boldt decision that affirmed the tribes’ right to half the salmon harvests, and set the stage for joint management. Their earlier failure to reach an agreement triggered a May 1 closure of salmon to sport fishermen, and started to reignite smoldering tensions about how to divide up Puget Sound’s diminished salmon runs to comply with the court ruling.

“I am still disappointed we couldn’t get this done in a more timely manner, and I believe that comes from just not having enough conversation,” said Ron Warren, the state Fish and Wildlife salmon-policy manager.

“We know we need to spend more time talking and to work on our listening skills, especially where the actual effects (or issues) of certain fisheries are happening,” Warren said. “Those are valued conversations, and we hope we can do that in the future, and have better dialogue to avoid these situations.”

During the negotiations, tribal officials talked about the need to refocus on restoring the Puget Sound salmon runs throughout the region.

“This isn’t anybody’s fault. It’s a lack of habitat. A lack of salmon. We are fighting over the very last salmon, and that’s not what this should be about,” said Willie Frank, the Puyallup Tribe assistant natural-resources manager and son of the late Billy Frank Jr., a champion of tribal-fishing rights and the region’s salmon.

Puget Sound is a focal point of the state’s sport fisheries, with an estimated 200,000 anglers holding salmon licenses during the 2014-2015 season. The salmon runs have struggled over the years as development and pollution from the region’s growing population has harmed spawning and rearing grounds, and poor ocean conditions have further reduced fish survival.

The harvest cutbacks the tribes agreed to include reductions in treaty tribal winter-troll fisheries off the western edge of the Strait of Juan de Fuca from a catch quota of 8,500 to 4,500 chinook. The plan also calls for less tribal-netting time of coho on the Puyallup River as well as other river systems.

The state conservation measures include closing the sport-fishing season on the Puyallup River this year, although the Carbon River will be open for 15 days for hatchery chinook; no coho fishing in Puget Sound except for Hood Canal; and closing central and northern Puget Sound after each area achieves quotas for summer hatchery chinook.

The plan also calls for closing the salmon fishery in south-central Puget Sound — known as Marine Catch Area 11 in the Tacoma area — from September through January.

“Everyone recognized that extraordinary restrictions to sport fisheries would be necessary, so the recreational community was squarely behind the (state Fish and Wildlife) Department” in developing a conservation-oriented sport package, said Pat Pattillo, who spent 38 years as the state Fish and Wildlife salmon-policy coordinator and is a spokesman for 10 sport-fishing groups.

State fishery managers were able to reinstate the Central Puget Sound hatchery chinook fishery (1,395 fish catch guideline) — closed last year due to a poor Lake Washington chinook run — which will open along with Northern Puget Sound on July 16 for hatchery chinook only, with a set catch guideline of 3,056.

The western Strait of Juan de Fuca off Sekiu will be open for a hatchery-chinook directed fishery July 1 to Aug. 15, and a bonus bag limit for sockeye.

A change for the San Juan Islands is a hatchery-chinook-only directed fishery from July 1-30, and then for all chinook Aug. 31 to Sept. 30.

Baker Lake will be open in mid-July through early September to target a strong forecast of sockeye, and the Skagit River will be open from June 16 through July 15 with a 4,600 sockeye catch guideline.

Many areas will see extended closures in late summer and fall to protect a weak return of coho to Puget Sound. In fact, Lake Washington and Lake Sammamish will be closed to all game-fish from Sept. 1 to Oct. 31.

The Lower Skokomish will also be closed this year due to a claim by the tribe that it is part of the tribal-reservation land and public access is prohibited. State fisheries is looking into this claim.

“We should be figuring out how to get our salmon back, and restore them for the next generations,” Frank said. “It’s not just the tribal generations, it’s the non-natives too. They want to be able to teach their kids how to fish. I’m only 34, and I hope I don’t have to fight for the fish for next 10 to 15 years.”

Scientists say the coho’s ocean survival was undermined by the blob, a vast area of warmer ocean water that altered the makeup of the food chain in the waters off the West Coast.

Many Puget Sound coho that went to the ocean either didn’t survive or came back last year at below-average weight. And more weak wild returns are forecast for this year.

With this season’s fisheries resolved, the co-managers will focus on addressing long-term resource management concerns, such as restoring habitat and boosting salmon stocks.

“Habitat restoration and protection must be at the center of that effort,” Lorraine Loomis, chair of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission said in a news release. “There is a direct connection between salmon habitat and fishing opportunities. We can’t expect salmon to thrive while their habitat continues to be lost and damaged.”

When the state and tribes failed to come to an agreement during the normal salmon-season setting process from March through mid-April, it essentially closed many fisheries that fed into Puget Sound as of May while some tribal harvests were able to move forward.

That prompted about 20 anglers to protest a Swinomish tribal spring chinook gill-net fishery on May 4 in the Skagit River, followed with another protest in Lacey, Thurston County, at federal offices that drew dozens of sport fishermen.

The Puget Sound salmon agreement reached by the state and tribal officials must be approved by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which has to review the harvests for impacts on chinook runs listed under the federal Endangered Species Act.






Susan Chambers, Contributing Writer
SeafoodNews.com 1-781-861-1441
Editorial Email: Editor@seafood.com
Reporter's Email: sunsetbaymedia@gmail.com
Reporter's Phone: (541) 297-2875

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Alaska's Salmon Prices Poised to Rebound in 2017 (Fish Radio)

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Fish Radio with Laine Welch] - May 27, 2016

This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – More salmon news you can use. That’s up after this –

The Alaska Marine Safety Education Association offers free ergonomics training to seafood processing workers and fishermen to reduce injuries and increase productivity. Visit www.amsea.org to schedule a training at your plant or vessel.

Federal grants are available to help “Made in America” companies compete with imports and save US jobs. Learn more at www.nwtaac.org.

Global market conditions and lower supplies point to a brighter outlook for salmon prices this year. That will reverse a slide that saw prices to fishermen drop by more than 40 percent over back to back years that produced Alaska’s biggest salmon harvests on record.

Sockeye prices dropped 61 percent averaging 81 cents a pound, pinks dropped 51 percent averaging 22 cents. Coho prices dipped 45 percent to 76 cents, kings were down 19 percent to $3.51, and chum salmon prices decreased by 17 percent to 55 a pound.

Market experts now predict that salmon prices will begin improving and could rebound in 2017. That’s a main takeaway from the Salmon Market Information Service from the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute.

"Things are looking better supply wise, currency wise, from the way the first wholesale market sales have been going the processors probably doing better cash flow wise. I think it’s important for people to realize how good markets were in 2013 and 2014 and keep their expectations realistic."

Andy Wink, a fisheries economist with the McDowell Group, which compiles twice yearly salmon market analyses for ASMI.

Another takeaway this year is that canned salmon packs from the past two bumper seasons are still stockpiled, meaning processors will be focusing more on fresh and frozen, headed and gutted fish – called H&G - and fillet production. Fish that is unchilled, bruised or marked won’t cut it in that market. Maximizing sockeye quality this summer, notably at Bristol Bay, will be more important than ever to in maximize the value of the catch.

Over the last two years, frozen H&G and canned production accounted for 61 percent of the first wholesale value of Alaska salmon, while all other product forms combined accounted for the rest, including salmon meal, oil, strips, and frames.

Sockeye and pink salmon accounted for the largest share of Alaska’s harvest volume and value to fishermen- a combined 84 and 78 percent, respectively. Chum, coho, and Chinook salmon accounted for the other 16 percent of harvest volume and 22 percent of the dockside value.

You can track all of Alaska’s salmon catches daily at the commercial fishing division’s Bluesheet, along with weekly summaries and five year averages. Find links at our website www.alaskafishradio.com

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods, an Alaska corporation proudly supporting Alaska’s coastal communities and the Alaskans who depend on fishing for their livelihoods and culture. www.oceanbeauty.com

In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.



Michael Ramsingh
SeafoodNews.com 1-732-240-5330
Editorial Email: Editor@seafood.com
Reporter's Email: michaelramsingh@seafood.com

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