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07-11-2012, 08:30 AM #1
Sad State of Affairs for the Kenai Kings
I've spent a lot of memorable days chasing kings on the Kenai and it's sad to see what's going on up there right now.
As of July 6, all indices used to assess inriver abundance indicate a run that is well below average. Inseason projections show all indices will not achieve their respective minimum inseason management objective by the end of the run in early August. Through July 6 the DIDSON sonar cumulative estimate of king salmon passage into the Kenai River was 659. Inseason projections using DIDSON sonar are for a total run to the river of 6,000 to 9,000 late-run Kenai River king salmon.
King salmon run update:
To date all indices used to assess the late-run are very low, well below average, and are currently projected to be well under the in-season management objectives at the end of the run in early August. The daily DIDSON sonar passage estimate of king salmon for July 8 was 131 fish. The cumulative DIDSON sonar passage estimate through July 8 is 911 king salmon. The department is still in the process of transitioning to DIDSON equipment, therefore current sonar passage data is an index compared to the last two years of DIDSON data, when runs were low, not a measure of abundance relative to the existing escapement goal.
The department is continuing to examine further inseason restrictive actions in a step-down manner to administer during the remainder of July to ensure adequate escapement of Kenai River king salmon. The next step is to close the Kenai River to king salmon fishing and could be announced as soon as Friday, July 13.
Looks like a total closure of king fishing is on the horizon, which in my opinion is the only logical thing to do at this point. I feel bad for the folks up there who make a living off this resource.
07-11-2012, 09:56 AM #2
Happened down here the last few years, fish were just flat out absent from our valley rivers 2-3 years in a row. Finally starting to pick back up and be open again but it's scary and you have to wonder what happened to those classes of fish?