Quota Share Commercial Fisheries Update
The 2014 quota share halibut fisheries opened on March 8. It is estimated that the following catches and numbers of landings were made in the Alaskan IFQ and CDQ fisheries and in the British Columbian IVQ fishery through June 15, 2014.
The catch off Alaska represents 48% of the 2014 commercial fishery catch limit. For comparison, 9.5 million pounds, or 41% of the 2013 catch limit, were landed in the Alaskan fishery by this same date in 2013; however, the opening date of the 2013 fishery occurred fifteen days later in the year than that of the 2014 fishery. Thus, during the first 99 days of the 2013 Alaskan commercial halibut fishery, 11.0 million pounds, or 48% of the catch limit, were landed.
The catch from British Columbian (Area 2B) waters represents 47% of the 2014 commercial fishery catch limit. For comparison, 2.1 million pounds, or 35% of the 2013 catch limit, had been landed from Area 2B by this same date in 2013. Also, during the first 99 days of the 2013 IVQ fishery, 2.3 million pounds, or 39% of the catch limit, had been landed.
Annette Islands Reserve Fishery in Area 2C
The Metlakatla Indian Community has been authorized by the United States Government to conduct a commercial halibut fishery within the Annette Islands Reserve. The second, third, and fourth 48-hour fishing periods of the 2014 season, with opening dates of May 2, May 16, and May 30, had halibut catches of 6,142, 6,456, and 6,315 pounds, respectively. The total landed weight of halibut to date is 21,784 pounds. The Metlakatla Indian Community and the Bureau of Indian Affairs will announce future halibut openings.
Area 2A Commercial Treaty Indian Fisheries
In 2014, the Pacific Fishery Management Council allocated 307,500 pounds of halibut for commercial use to the Treaty Indian tribes of Area 2A-1. Revised catch estimates of the 10-hour restricted fishery on May 8 indicate that the total allocation has now been taken. The Area 2A Treaty Indian commercial halibut fishery is closed for the remainder of 2014.
Area 2A Incidental Commercial Halibut Fishery During the Salmon Troll Season
The total allowable incidental commercial catch of halibut allocated to the Area 2A salmon troll fishery is 29,671 pounds. Incidental catch of halibut in the salmon troll fishery was allowed beginning April 1. It is estimated that 25,400 pounds have been landed through June 16 in Washington and Oregon, leaving 4,271 pounds to be harvested. The incidental halibut catch fishery during the salmon troll season remains open until further notice. For further incidental fishery retention information, call the NMFS hotline (1 800-662-9825 press 7 for halibut information).
Area 2A Incidental Commercial Halibut Fishery During the Limited Entry, Fixed Gear Sablefish Fishery
The total allowable incidental commercial catch of halibut allocated to the limited entry, fixed gear sablefish fishery, which operates in Area 2A north of Point Chehalis, Washington, is 14,274 pounds. Incidental catch of halibut in the sablefish fishery was allowed beginning April 1. It is estimated that 5,870 pounds of halibut have been landed through May 29, leaving 8,404 pounds. The incidental commercial halibut fishery during the limited entry, fixed gear sablefish fishery remains open until further notice. For further incidental fishery retention information, call the NMFS hotline (1-800-662-9825 press 7 for halibut information).
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Bruce M. Leaman
Phone: (206) 634-1838
Fax: (206) 632-2983