Copper River Salmon Catch Nears 400,000 Fish

A sockeye salmon. File photo.

Preliminary harvest totals for the first six openers of Alaska’s Copper River wild salmon fishery put the total catch at nearly 400,000 fish, including 380.154 sockeyes, 11,884 chum, 6,980 Chinook and 15 pinks.

Fishermen have made an estimated 2,288 deliveries to date.

Jess Rude, executive director of Cordova District Fishermen United, said that overall, people are happy about a good start to the season, and also relieved after many seasons of concerning runs.

“It’s been really great,” Rude told Fishermen’s News on June 5, as the seventh opener of the season was underway. “The fishing is good.  I think it will be a really good summer.”

Demand for these succulent first of the season wild salmon remains high, particularly with promotions for Father’s Day, which is June 18. Average orders of Copper River fish are 15 pounds at 10th & M Seafoods in Anchorage, a prominent purveyor of wild Alaska seafood.

Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle is reminding its customers that the Copper River salmon is only available through the middle or end of June, and that all Copper River salmon orders are being delayed and shipped as one order. There is an additional shipping charge on express orders.

10th & M Seafoods, meanwhile, is filling orders averaging 15 pounds of fresh Copper River sockeye salmon, with the price of fillets holding at $18.95 a pound and headed and gutted reds at $11.95 a pound.

Fish departments at Anchorage’s two New Sagaya markets are offering five pounds of Copper River sockeye fillets for $199.00, and Anchorage’s online seafood market FishEx has what it describes as “premium portions” of Copper River reds at $54.95 a pound and “premium portions” of Copper River king salmon at $74.95 a pound.