Quota Share Commercial Fisheries Update
The 2016 quota share halibut fisheries opened on March 19. It is estimated that the following commercial landings, in pounds and numbers, were made in the Alaskan IFQ and CDQ fisheries through June 19, 2016 and in the British Columbian IVQ fishery through June 17, 2016.
The catch off Alaska represents 48% of the 2016 commercial fishery catch limit. For comparison, 8.8 million pounds, or 49% of the 2015 catch limit, were landed in the Alaskan fishery by this same date in 2015; however, the opening date of the 2015 fishery occurred five days earlier in the year than that of the 2016 fishery. Thus, during the first 92 days of the 2015 Alaskan commercial halibut fishery, 8.4 million pounds, or 47% of the catch limit, were landed.
The catch from British Columbian (Area 2B) waters represents 38% of the 2016 commercial fishery catch limit. For comparison, 2.5 million pounds, or 43% of the 2015 catch limit, had been landed from Area 2B by this same date in 2015. Also, during the first 90 days of the 2015 IVQ fishery, 2.4 million pounds, or 41% 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. Five 48-hour fishing periods, with opening dates in April (1), May (3), and June (1), have occurred thus far in 2016. The total landed weight of halibut reported to date is 23,299 pounds. The Metlakatla Indian Community and the Bureau of Indian Affairs will announce future halibut openings.
Area 2A Commercial Treaty Indian Fisheries
In 2016, the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) allocated 365,100 pounds of halibut for commercial use to the Treaty Indian tribes of Area 2A-1. Preliminary catch estimates indicate that 350,758 pounds of halibut have been taken to date, leaving 14,342 pounds to be caught. The Treaty tribes have until August 15 to catch their share of the remaining poundage.
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 34,123 pounds. Incidental catch of halibut in the salmon troll fishery was allowed beginning April 1. Preliminary landing estimates indicate that approximately 16,500 pounds of halibut have been landed through June 21 in Washington and Oregon. There are roughly 17,600 pounds remaining to be harvested. 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 49,686 pounds. Incidental catch of halibut in the sablefish fishery was allowed beginning April 1. It is estimated that 3,400 pounds of halibut were landed through June 12. There are nearly 46,300 pounds remaining to be harvested. For further incidental fishery retention information, call the NMFS hotline (1-800-662-9825 press 7 for halibut information).
- END -
Bruce M. Leaman
Phone: (206) 634-1838
Fax: (206) 632-2983