Purse seiners stand down in chum salmon dispute

Posted: Thursday, June 10, 2010

SAND POINT - Purse seiners in Sand Point and King Cove in Southwest Alaska are sitting out the season's first sockeye opening this week in the Area M fishery around Alaska's Eastern Aleutian Islands and Western Peninsula on the North Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea.

The Tundra Drums reports it's a gesture of solidarity with subsistence chum fishermen on the Yukon and Kuskokwim rivers and a move to head off restrictions from the Alaska Board of Fisheries.

Although the purse seiners doubt their fleet takes too many chum salmon, many residents in the Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim region believe it results in fewer chum reaching spawning beds.

Sand Point Mayor Glen Gardner Jr. says the stand down recognizes the concerns of subsistence fishermen.

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