Stikine subsistence chinook fishery closed again this year

For the sixth year in a row, federal managers have closed the Stikine River chinook subsistence fishery to help preserve weak runs of the returning salmon.

Clint Kolarich, Wrangell District Ranger with the U.S. Forest Service, announced the decision last week, under authority delegated by the Federal Subsistence Board. The closure will run from May 15 through June 20.

“The preseason forecast for the Stikine River is 7,400 large chinook salmon (greater than 28 inches in total length), which is below the escapement goal range of 14,000 to 28,000 large chinook salmon,” the announcement reported.

The closure blocks subsistence fishing for chinook in the river, just as it has since 2017. The order, however, does not affect the Stikine sockeye subsistence fishery, which is scheduled to open June 21.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game for years has taken actions in the state-managed fisheries in salt water to reduce the commercial and sport harvest of Stikine chinook.


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