King Salmon Annual Limit Established and Use of Bait Prohibited in Tanana River Drainage Tributaries

(Fairbanks) – To ensure that king salmon spawning escapements are met in 2018, an annual limit for king salmon, 20 inches and greater in length, of one fish is established in the Tanana River sport fishery. When a king salmon is harvested you must record your harvest on the back of your sport fishing license or on a harvest record card, if you are not required to have a license. In addition, the use of bait is prohibited in the flowing waters of all tributaries of the Tanana River. The use of bait is still permitted in the mainstem portion of the Tanana River to allow fishing for other species such as burbot. These restrictions will be in effect from 12:01 a.m. Monday, July 2 through 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, August 15, 2018.

The estimated king salmon passage at the Pilot Station sonar is below average for years with normal run timing. This indicates that the run may come in below the lower end of the preseason projection range of 173,000 to 251,000 king salmon. The magnitude of the 2018 run should be sufficient to ensure king salmon escapements goals are met in the Tanana River drainage due to conservative management practices implemented in the Yukon and Tanana river commercial, subsistence, and sport fisheries.

Counting towers on the Chena and Salcha rivers were operational on June 26 and no king salmon have been counted to date. The department will monitor these returns closely and projected escapements to these rivers will be used when considering additional regulatory actions.

Klaus Wuttig, Tanana Area Management Biologist