The Kodiak area salmon catch passed the half-million mark over the weekend, reaching 617,460 on Independence Day. According to Alaska Department of Fish and Game figures, over 100,000 fish – mostly reds and chum were caught last week.
The harvest for red salmon through Sunday was 434,560 fish, with 159,860 chum caught through that same time period. Pink salmon continue to trickle in, with 21,176 caught. Kings stand at 1,753, with 111 early silvers harvested through the 4th.
Cape Igvak and Wide Bay on the mainland side of the Shelikof Strait is by far the most productive sockeye area for fishermen so far this summer, with a harvest through Sunday of 177,121, accounting for over 40-percent of the red catch. Fishermen in the Duck, Izhut and Kitoi Bay area have taken almost 82 percent of the chum salmon caught through Sunday, some 130,544.
Meanwhile sockeye escapement has been running close to the to-date numbers from recent years, though there are some that are doing better. The Chignik River weir count, at around 428,000 reds, is better than it has been through July 3rd since 2001. The Litnik sockeye escapement is almost double a year ago, and higher than it’s been in a decade. Systems lagging behind last year’s sockeye escapement numbers include Saltery Creek, Frazer Lake, and Dog Salmon Creek.
Commercial fishing changes fast this time of year, and in-season adjustments to fishing areas and times are updated regularly on Fish and Game’s 24-hour record-a-phone at 486-4559. Announcements can also be found on the department’s web site.