Big expectations for 2011 Alaska salmon harvest

The Alaska Department of Fish & Game (ADF&G) on Thursday projected the state’s salmon harvest to reach 203 million fish this year, which would be up more than 25 percent from last year and the fifth largest catch since 1960.

ADF&G also projected this year’s pink salmon harvest to be the fourth highest on record, at 133.7 million fish.

Sockeye landings are expected to total 45.1 million fish, and chum at 19.2 million fish.

The state’s chinook salmon forecast is not yet available and will be released by the Pacific Salmon Commission in late March or early April. Forecasts are based on quantitative projections of next year’s salmon run using information on previous spawning levels, smolt outmigrations, returns of sibling age classes and recent survival rates observed for hatchery releases.

Last year, Alaska’s salmon harvest totaled 168.5 million fish.


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