Wild Alaska Salmon Harvest Tops 58 Million; Bristol Bay Peaks at 16 Million

wild salmon catch results show that Alaska’s wild salmon commercial harvest
topped 58 million fish on July 17, including 16 million salmon for Bristol
Bay—about one million fish shy of the already low harvest forecast for the
famed fishery.

harvesters were elated this past weekend when processors started posting a base
price of $1.50 a pound —up 50 cents from the base price posted for the past
two years.

One Bristol
Bay veteran summed up the mood as “elation and dancing in the streets,” and
noted that harvesters who caught the same amount this year as last year were
much better off on this go around.

The Alaska
Independent Fishermen’s Marketing Association was among those confirming the
price.  At least several processors were
also adding 15 cents a pound for refrigerated seawater, and one additional
nickel for bleeding the fish. With new competition coming into the Bay in 2014
with the opening of Silver Bay Seafoods’ new processing facility at Naknek,
other processors were expected to match the base price.

The Alaska
Department of Fish and Game forecast was for a Bristol Bay run of 26.03 million
salmon, with a harvest of 17 million and escapement of 8.50 million fish.

preliminary statewide commercial harvest has reached 58,283,000 wild salmon of
all species, including 25.4 million sockeye, 21.6 million pink, 10.4 million
chum, 455,000 silver and 270,000 king salmon.

In Cook
Inlet, the catch to date includes1,770,000 fish, including 1.6 million red,
49,000 chum, 35,000 silver, 16,000 pink and 4,000 kings, while Prince William
Sound has delivered 22.3 million fish, including nearly 17 million pink, 3.2
million chum, 2.1 million sockeye, 10,000 king and 5,000 silver salmon.

Alaska harvesters have caught nearly 9 million fish, including over 5 million
chum, 3.1 million pink, 312,000 silver, 280,000 red and 209,000 king salmon.

In the Alaska
Peninsula the harvest, mainly from the South Peninsula, has reached 3.7 million
fish, including 2.6 million sockeye, 669,000 pink, 561,000 chum, 92,000 silver
and 4,000 king salmon.

At Chignik,
processors have received over 2.1 million salmon, including nearly 2 million
sockeye, 99,000 chum, 87,000 pink, 3,000 silver and 2,000 king salmon,. Kodiak
processors have seen delivery of 2.8 million fish, including 1.6 million red,
788,000 pink, 354,000 chum, 23,000 king and 8,000 silver salmon.