Taku really is an 'Important Habitat'

Posted: Sunday, February 15, 2009

As a commercial fisherman and co-owner of a growing fish processing business that relies on the productive, wild salmon fisheries of the Taku, I want to extend a sincere thank you to the Fish and Game biologists who requested that the Taku be formally designated an "Important Habitat." I also wish to thank the Department of Natural Resources for agreeing to this designation.

As Southeast Alaska's most productive salmon river and as a provider of jobs and income to Juneau families, the Taku is clearly an important habitat and vital resource to the region. With proper management, the Taku will continue to provide sustainable salmon runs that support hundreds of local families long into the future.

Thanks as well to Juneau's three legislators for supporting the habitat request in letters to DNR. Setting the proper standards to ensure the Taku continues to support healthy fisheries and hundreds of jobs in the region is something on which we can all agree.

The overworked biologists at Natural Resources and Fish and Game need the proper tools to safeguard the Taku's rich fisheries and to properly analyze projects being discussed. I am glad that state officials in those departments and Juneau's legislators agree on this topic.

Kirk Hardcastle


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