Quota Share Commercial Fisheries Update
The 2017 quota share Pacific halibut fisheries opened on 11 March 2017. It is estimated that the following commercial landings, in pounds and numbers, were made in the Alaskan IFQ and CDQ fisheries through 22 May 2017 and in the British Columbian IVQ fishery through 18 May 2017.
The catch off Alaska represents 31% of Alaska’s 2017 commercial fishery catch limit. For comparison, 6.2 million pounds, or 35% of the 2016 catch limit, were landed in the Alaskan fishery by this same date in 2016; however, the opening date of the 2016 fishery occurred eight days later in the year than that of the 2017 fishery. Thus, during the first 72 days of the 2016 Alaskan commercial Pacific halibut fishery, 7.2 million pounds, or 40% of the catch limit, were landed.
The catch from British Columbia (Regulatory Area 2B) waters represents 27% of the 2017 commercial fishery catch limit. For comparison, 1.7 million pounds, or 27% of the 2016 catch limit, had been landed from Regulatory Area 2B by this same date in 2016. Also, during the first 68 days of the 2016 IVQ fishery, 1.9 million pounds, or 30% of the catch limit, had been landed.
IPHC Regulatory Area 2A Commercial Treaty Indian Fisheries
In 2017, the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) allocated 435,900 pounds of Pacific halibut for commercial use to the Treaty Indian tribes of Regulatory Area 2A-1. Preliminary catch estimates indicate that 40,993 pounds of Pacific halibut were landed during a 35-hour restricted fishery opening beginning on 1 May 2017. A total of 305,560 pounds of Pacific halibut have been reported landed thus far in 2017. Mop-up fisheries were scheduled for 19-20 May (Washington coast) and 22-23 May (Puget Sound).
IPHC Regulatory Area 2A Incidental Commercial Pacific Halibut Fishery During the Salmon Troll Season
The total allowable incidental commercial catch of Pacific halibut allocated to the Regulatory Area 2A salmon troll fishery is 39,810 pounds. Incidental catch of halibut in the salmon troll fishery was allowed beginning 1 April. It is estimated 738 pounds of Pacific halibut have been landed through 21 May. The PFMC adopted new landing restrictions that started on 1 May; for incidental fishery retention information, call the NMFS hotline (1 800-662-9825 press 7 for halibut information).
IPHC Regulatory Area 2A Incidental Commercial Pacific Halibut Fishery During the Limited Entry, Fixed-Gear Sablefish Fishery
The total allowable incidental commercial catch of Pacific halibut allocated to the limited entry, fixed-gear sablefish fishery, which operates in Regulatory Area 2A north of Point Chehalis, Washington, is 70,000 pounds. Incidental catch of Pacific halibut in the sablefish fishery was allowed beginning 1 April 2017. Preliminary landing estimates are not yet available. For further incidental fishery retention information, call the NMFS hotline (1-800-662-9825 press 7 for Pacific halibut information).
Annette Islands Reserve Fishery in IPHC Regulatory Area 2C
The Metlakatla Indian Community has been authorized by the United States Government to conduct a commercial Pacific halibut fishery within the Annette Islands Reserve. The following table lists Pacific halibut catch and numbers of participating vessels by fishing period.
|Fishing Period Dates||Catch (net pounds)||Number of Vessels|
|14 - 16 April||2,994||23|
|5 - 7 May||5,158||12|
|19 - 21 May||7,914||18|
The total landed weight of Pacific halibut reported to date is 16,066 pounds. The Metlakatla Indian Community and the Bureau of Indian Affairs will announce future Pacific halibut openings.
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David T. Wilson, Ph.D.
Executive Director, IPHC
Phone: (206) 634-1838
Fax: (206) 632-2983