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Southeast Alaska non-pelagic rockfish sport fishing regulations announced for 2013

Posted: February 1, 2013 - 1:03am
Areas used for non-pelagic rockfish management in Southeast, Alaska.   Courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Areas used for non-pelagic rockfish management in Southeast, Alaska.

This week the Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced the non-pelagic rockfish bag, possession and the retention rules for the sport fishery during 2013 in the Southeast Outside Waters and Southeast Inside Waters.

Nonresident angler annual limits of yelloweye rockfish have also been established for the 2013 season.

Non-pelagic rockfish differ from pelagic rockfish in that they prefer deep, rocky habitats, whereas pelagic rockfish tend to school in open water.

The following regulations are effective after midnight on Friday, Feb. 1.

For all Southeast waters:

• All non-pelagic rockfish caught must be retained until the bag limit is reached.

• Persons sport fishing from a charter vessel when releasing non-pelagic rockfish, (e.g. after an angler reaches their bag limit), must be in possession of, and utilize a deep water release mechanism to return the fish to the depth it was hooked or to a depth of at least 100 feet.

• Charter operators and crew members may not retain non-pelagic rockfish while clients are on board the vessel.

Southeast Outside waters:

• Alaska Residents: No size limit, two daily, only one may be a yelloweye rockfish; four in possession, of which no more than two may be yelloweye rockfish.

• Nonresidents: No size limit, two daily, only one may be a yelloweye rockfish; four in possession, of which no more than one may be a yelloweye rockfish; annual limit of one yelloweye rockfish, which must be recorded, in ink, on the back of the angler’s sport fishing license or on a harvest record card at the time of harvest.

Southeast Inside waters:

• Alaska Residents: No size limit, three daily, only one may be a yelloweye rockfish; six in possession, of which no more than two maybe yelloweye rockfish.

• Nonresidents: No size limit, two daily, only one may be a yelloweye rockfish; four in possession, of which no more than two may be a yelloweye rockfish; annual limit of two yelloweye rockfish, which must be recorded, in ink, on the back of the angler’s sport fishing license or on a harvest record card at the time of harvest.

According to a release from the ADF&G, the Alaska Board of Fisheries allocated 16 percent of the allowable catch of demersal shelf rockfish to the sport fishery and established management provisions (5 AAC 47.065) to manage the sport fishery within the allocation. The measures implemented during 2013 are intended to provide fishing opportunity yet limit total mortality of non-pelagic rockfish within the sport allocation, and thereby ensure the sustainability of demersal shelf rockfish populations in the Southeast Alaska Area.

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