Alaska salmon catch shy of forecast
Alaska’s 2009 salmon catch will fall “substantially” shy of the pre-season forecast of 175 million fish, said Ray Riutta, executive director of the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, in ASMI’s 30 August e-newsletter.
Through Friday, more than 147 million fish have been landed, with the bulk of the coho harvest and the tail end of the pink harvest still ahead, noted Riutta.
This year’s lower-than-anticipated Alaska salmon catch is due primarily to the Southeast Alaska and Prince William Sound pink harvest, which totaled 63.6 million fish through Friday, though the pink harvest in Kodiak, Chignik and Alaska Peninsula has been strong. The Alaska Department of Fish & Game’s pre-season projection called for a statewide pink harvest of 113.2 million fish.
However, the Bristol Bay sockeye harvest, the state’s largest and most valuable salmon fishery, came in at nearly 30 million fish, up 6 million fish from the pre-season forecast.
Through Friday, Alaska fishermen had netted 88.5 million pinks, 41.6 million sockeye, 14.4 million chum, 2.5 million coho and 303,000 kings.