Purse seine videos are starting to roll in. Remember to upload your vids to http://www.fishfilmfest.com. We are just reviewing videos for the upcoming festival this January. | Via Youtube: A fun depiction of commercial salmon fishing in Kodiak, Alaska. Filmed aboard the F/V New Dawn using GoPros, iPhones, and a Nikon 3200 to capture the action. We omitted the awful weather, dangerously long work hours, Jellyfish to the face, and endless boat work for the sake of crew morale.
Captains and Crew are gathering back in Dutch Harbor, Alaska for the opilio, “snow crab” season, which generally starts up after the new year. The 25 percent cut in total quota should speed up the season. Last year, boats were challenged by floating ice, creating the longest snow crab season in history. Arctic Ice may play a huge factor in this season’s harvest, too. The Arctic huge melt equals tons more floating ice in the southern fishing grounds. Stay tuned for more updates as this season on the Bering Sea continues…
The 2013 total allowable catch, or TAC, for Bering Sea snow crab was set at 66.35 million pounds, a 25 percent cut compared to nearly 89 million pounds in 2012.
The snow crab harvest cut comes from a decrease in the mature male biomass (females may not be retained), and a change in the stock’s age composition. The crab are much older than in the past — about 60 percent of the mature male biomass is old shell crab — compared to about 37 percent last year.
Fishing quota holders will be able to harvest 59.7 million pounds, while community development quota programs will take the remaining 6.6 million pounds.
Kodiak tanner crab will be harvested from the eastside and southeast sections, for a total of 660,000 pounds.
A lot has happened in the world of commercial fishing within the past year. Halibut has dominated the recent headlines with serious implications of a failed fishery. Whereas, commercial salmon fishing has garnered some of the highest prices and catch returns in years. The commercial fishing industry seems to be plagued with more than is fair share of highs and lows. So, hunker down and we will go over some of last years biggest headlines in what some call the “Deadliest Business.”
Salmon dominated the news this year with recent hints of a virus blooming in wild pacific salmon population and a geneticly designed Frankenfish that would solve all of our salmon farming issues. Also record harvests In southeast and Chignik supplied plenty of headlines too. Of course, news of an impending industrial mine in the heart of Alaska‘s sockeye country was met with fierce opposition throughout the year.
Commercial squid fishing in California has seen a huge uptake in value within the last two seasons. In the past, the fishery could take up to six months to catch the quota of 180,000 tons. Last year they were done by Christmas. This year the boys were done by turkey day.
Bering SeaKing crab quotas were heavily cut this year, but record high prices and a quick season were great for consumers and producers. Southeast Alaskaeven got a chance at king crab this past October. Six years had passed since the last crab opener in the region, so locals were eager to cash in the on record prices.
Sitka Herring was seriously impacted by the Japanese tsunami this spring. Right before the herring started showing, the tsunami devastated most of the Japanese seafood market, including the buyers. The tragedy resulted in a huge drop in the ex vessel price of herring. In 2010, herring were 410 dollars a ton. This spring we were only able to get 100 dollars a ton.
The next segment will include halibut, pollock, and even some dive fisheries. Feel free to add some suggestions or point me to stories that I may have overlookd
Coming up this week, herring fishing is slow around Ketchikan, despite not having an opening since the Bicentennial; There are concerns over the Bristol Bay King Salmon season; and all three of the governor’s nominees to the board of fisheries get the nod of approval from the legislature. All that and it’s ComFish Alaska time in Kodiak.