Another down year forecast for Southeast Alaska pink salmon

2019 could be another down year for pink salmon fishing in Southeast Alaska. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game and scientists with NOAA Fisheries Auke Bay Lab are forecasting a commercial harvest of 18 million fish, which would fall in the weak category for catches over the past six decades.

“You know we’ve seen low even year harvests but this would be the lowest odd-year harvest we’ve seen in quite a while if this materializes,” said Andy Piston, Fish and Game’s pink and chum salmon project leader for Southeast.

18 million would be about half of the recent 10-year average and the lowest odd-year harvest in over 30 years. It would be well down from the catch in 2017, when fishing fleets netted 34 million pinks in the region.

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