For the week of May 28, 2012:
This is the fourth sport harvest rates report of the 2012 season. Sport fishing effort increased at most ports last week, with the total weekly amount sampled by our creel survey crews at each port ranged from below 200 rod-hours at Elfin Cove and Gustavus on the low end, to between 270 rod-hours in Craig/Klawock to over 2,100 rod-hours in Ketchikan.
King salmon: Chinook salmon harvest rates ranged from 4 rod-hours per fish in Sitka to 59 rod-hours in Juneau and Haines. The harvest rates at Petersburg, Sitka, Juneau, Haines and Yakutat were better than or equal to the recent five-year average, while harvest rates were poorer than the five-year average at the other sampled ports. The Chinook salmon fishery throughout the region should continue to be productive into mid-July, as the inner Southeast Alaska ports will have hatchery fish returning to enhance local fisheries, while the outer coast ports will continue to have the benefit of access to a mixed-stock Chinook salmon fishery.
Halibut: All sampled ports had harvested halibut encountered by our creel personnel, with harvest rates ranging from 3 rod-hours in Craig/Klawock to 17 rod-hours in Ketchikan.
In terms of harvest of other salmonid species in the marine boat fishery last week, the second harvested chum salmon of the 2012 Southeast Alaska creel program was encountered in Yakutat.
The creel survey in Skagway starts up May 29.
King salmon: Currently, the Juneau sport fishery for king salmon requires an average of 59 rod-hours per king salmon. Last year at this time it required 97 rod-hours per fish, and the five-year running average is 70 rod-hours per salmon. Anglers are currently having luck harvesting fish in the areas around False Outer Point, the Breadline and Auke Bay.
Halibut: The Juneau area halibut fishery is currently requiring approximately 9 rod-hours per fish. Anglers are catching halibut in the Homeshore, and Point Sophia areas. At this time last year the halibut fishery required approximately 60 rod-hours per fish, with a five year average of 52 rod-hours per fish.