PUBLISHED: 6:04 PM on Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Bag limits for king salmon, halibut changed as of June 1
JUNEAU - The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced May 27 that king salmon sport fishing regulations, for freshwater drainages crossed by the Juneau road system which are open to sport fishing, will be liberalized to provide recreational anglers additional opportunity to harvest hatchery king salmon.

These new regulations will be in effect from June 1 through August 31, 2008. The new harvest limits are:

• The daily bag and possession limit is four king salmon, any size.

• King salmon harvested in these freshwater drainages by nonresidents do not count toward their annual limit.

Only a few king salmon may stray into most streams on the Juneau road system; however the department expects that over 500 king salmon will enter Fish Creek on Douglas Island. Therefore, in Fish Creek Pond (see attached map), regulations that pertain to sport fishing methods and means will be liberalized as follows:

• Use of bait is allowed.

• Use of weighted hooks and lures, and multiple (treble) hooks with a gap greater than ? inch between the point and shank is allowed.

• Anglers may retain king salmon that are hooked elsewhere than in the mouth (snagged).

In the fresh waters of Fish Creek proper (excluding Fish Creek Pond) and in all intertidal waters within a 200 yard radius of the creek mouth as shown on the enclosed map, regional sport fishing methods and means will apply. In these fresh waters, the following is prohibited: the use of bait, weighted hooks and lures, treble hooks with a gap greater than ? inch between point and shank, attempting to snag fish, and retaining fish hooked elsewhere than in the mouth.

King salmon sport fishing regulations in saltwater areas near Juneau will also be liberalized as described in a separate news release.

For additional information contact the nearest ADF&G Division of Sport Fish office.

Charter anglers limited to one halibut per day

NOAA's Fisheries Service issued a new rule May 22 that states starting June 1, charter vessel anglers in southeast Alaska will be allowed to keep one instead of two halibut per day.

In addition, the number of lines used to fish for halibut must not exceed the number of anglers onboard the charter vessel, to a maximum of six lines. Also, guides and crew are not allowed to catch and retain halibut while clients are onboard.

"These new regulations are needed because charter fishing has grown in southeast Alaska while the abundance of halibut has decreased," said Doug Mecum, NOAA's Fisheries Service Alaska region acting administrator.

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council and NOAA's Fisheries Service approved the new regulations to reduce the harvest of halibut to the new target level of 931,000 pounds in 2008 in the waters of southeast Alaska, which is International Pacific Halibut Commission Area 2C. The new regulations will remain in effect until further notice.

While the target harvest for southeast Alaska in 2007 was 1.4 million pounds, the actual amount of halibut harvested by charter anglers was estimated at more than 1.7 million pounds.

Sport anglers who are not aboard guided charter vessels may continue to keep two halibut of any size daily. Guided charter vessel anglers outside of Southeast Alaska may also continue to keep two halibut of any size per day.

A regulation implemented earlier this year to assist enforcement officers to count the number of fish each angler possesses, says anglers can cut their halibut on board into not more than two ventral and two dorsal pieces and two cheeks, all with the skin on.

NOAA's Fisheries Service received many comments on the proposed regulations for the charter vessel fishery. A summary of those comments and the agency's responses will be published with the final regulations, which will be at

NOAA's Fisheries Service is dedicated to protecting and preserving our nation's living marine resources through scientific research, management, enforcement, and the conservation of marine mammals and other protected marine species and their habitat.