SE winter herring opens Friday

Southeast Alaska’s winter food and bait herring fishing is scheduled to open in certain areas at noon on Nov. 30.


The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced the opening Tuesday.

Section 3-B and District 4’s Craig and Klawock fishery is granted a guideline harvest level of 2,436 tons. Forecasts of spawning stock estimates age five herring.

ADF&G said in a press release that the fishery will open in “Section 3-B waters west of line from Blanquizal Point to Point Santa Rosalia to Tranquil Point and in those waters of District 4 north and east of a line from Lontana Point to Diver Point,” according to a ADF&G release.

The winter opener constitutes 60 percent of the Craig and Klawock total catch for 2012 and 2013. The remaining 40 percent is allocated for the Section 3B Herring Spawn On Kelp In Pounds Fishery. Any portion not taken during the winter fishery will also by allocated to the spawn on kelp fishery. ADF&G plans to announce this amount on March 15, 2013.

ADF&G set aside 341 tons for the District 7 Ernest Sound guideline harvest limit. The primary age class of spawning stock is age 4.

Within District 7, Zimovia Strait and Anita Bay will be closed north of a line that runs from Thomas Point to a point on the Etolin shoreline. Parts of Bradfield Canal, Blake Channel and Eastern Passage will also be closed.

The District 7 winter herring fishery makes up 90 percent of the total of 379 tons for the 2012 and 2013 season.

Fish and Game has not yet developed a biomass forecast for District 10 Hobart Bay and Port Houghton and District 12 Tenakee Inlet. Hobart Bay has seen herring spawn below historical averages. The forecast is expected to be too low to allow a fishery in the 2013 season.

Tenakee Inlet will not have a winter bait fishery for the 2012 and 2013 season.

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