We wish Megan well in her bid for Miss Indian World. Napaimute, Kalskag, Bethel and all of the Kuskokwim are especially proud of her, and we know that she will represent this region extremely well! Here are some photos from her Facebook page.
People have already been going up the Aniak River – which is wide open. The Aniak River water has been creeping down the slough, and FAA landing is pretty clear of ice as of noon on Thursday. The duck hunters will be out this weekend for sure! It shouldn’t be too long before the Kuskokwim itself goes…I hope you picked some early dates for the Kusko Ice Classic contest.
As we approach this coming summer’s fishing season with the high potential for another year of low king salmon returns and the risk of not meeting escapement for the third time in five years, at stake is the future of the subsistence king salmon fishery. Therefore, we must listen to our elders and heed their knowledge, advice and warnings. John Berlin, from Nunapichuk, was recently quoted in a KYUK news article saying, “If the animals we use had no one watching over them, making sure they are doing good, they would have already been gone.” http://kyuk.org/yupik-people-express-opinions-about-the-possibility-of-no-king-salmon-fishing-this-summer/ His elderly wisdom is [Read More...}
Happy Earth Day Everyone, Please take time to reflect on how important the Kuskokwim and the abundant and wonderful resources it provides are. Lets all do our part in what ever way we can to pass on a clean environment to future generations. Here is a fantastic example of what one small village in Bristol Bay is doing. http://ow.ly/vVV6E
Alaska Fish Radio reports that the commercial salmon catch for 2014 will likely be half as much as 2013. Many people might not know this, but pink salmon comprise the largest portion of commercially caught salmon in the state – king salmon the smallest. Pink salmon numbers are expected to be down substantially, with chums, coho and kings dropping – but not as drastically – while sockeye salmon are expected to increase by about 14%. These projections are for all of Alaska, and it should be noted that king salmon are not targeted in the Kuskokwim commercial fishery – a [Read More...}
The Federal Subsistence Board recently voted to restrict king salmon fishing this coming summer to federally qualified users. Other details on how to distribute any harvestable surplus is yet to be determined if the run is as weak as expected. Here is an article from KYUK describing the events of the board meeting in Anchorage: http://kyuk.org/federal-subsistence-board-votes-to-limit-kuskokwim-kings-to-federally-qualified-users/
House Bill 77, the controversial bill that would streamline and potentially fast track the State’s permitting process for land and water issues allowed by the Department of Natural Resources. The bill, if passed, would have eliminated the public’s ability, including tribes, to file for in stream flows to protect salmon and other important natural resources. Here’s the link for an article by Alaska Public Media: http://www.alaskapublic.org/2014/04/03/lawmakers-shelving-controversial-permitting-bill/ To see both sides of the issue check out: http://homertribune.com/2013/04/death-of-hb-77-is-silver-lining-in-legislative-session/ http://forum.icmj.com/index.php?/topic/287-please-help-support-hb77/ Dakota Phillips setting up a stream gauge on the lower Holokuk River
Fisheries managers and fisheries organizations like YRDFA (Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Assoc.) and the Kuskokwim Salmon Management Working Group (KSMWG) are doing their best to get the word out about the conservation needs of the region’s king salmon and the high likelihood for unprecedented restrictions on both rivers this coming summer. Twenty years ago the Yukon’s king run averaged 300,000 fish, last year saw only 76,000. If the trend continues, it will be difficult to reach the desired escapement goal this coming summer. Here’s the link for the latest on the Yukon River situation: http://kyuk.org/yukon-fisherman-prepare-for-a-summer-of-conservation/