Month: March 2014

Herring seiners hit target — and then some — in quick Saturday opener

The 2014 Sitka Sound sac roe herring fishery is over. The 48 permit holders caught the last remaining fish in this year’s harvest limit — and then some — in a wild 45-minute opener Saturday afternoon right in front of downtown Sitka. The preliminary estimate from the Alaska Department of Fish & Game for Saturday’s harvest is just shy of 4,000 tons, bringing this year’s total catch to 17,200 tons — about 900 tons more than the guideline harvest level.

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Herring opener set for 1:30 Saturday afternoon

The Alaska Department of Fish & Game has scheduled a fourth — and possibly final — commercial herring seine opening for 1:30 PM Saturday afternoon in Sitka Sound. This is an hour later than the start time previously announced. Biologist Dave Gordon reports that the net used by the Department’s research vessel Kestrel became seriously fouled this morning, causing the hour-long setback.

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Learning about herring, inside and out

This year, the Sitka Tribe, Sitka School District and Sitka National Historical Park launched what they hope become a new March tradition: herring camp. During spring break, about fifteen students, in 5th grade through high school, participated in a week of research into herring biology and ecology, along the way learning a little something about what goes on inside this iconic spring fish.

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Sitka herring fleet stands down, will resume search on Saturday

The Sitka sac roe herring fleet stood down at 3:50 PM today (Fri 3-28-14) after a long, frustrating search for a marketable volume of fish — and will try again tomorrow. State biologist Dave Gordon, who oversees the fishery, did not seem too discouraged by the fleet’s inability to locate sufficient herring to open seining.

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