Fisherman in Western Alaska feel angry at the State fishing managers claiming that the managers mismanaged struggling salmon stocks on the Yukon river. Thus in turn adversely affecting the rural Alaskan communities.
The people of the Bethel region state that villages could no longer abide by state fishery plans as they were not consulted when these plans were drawn up. The villages along the Yukon river are suffering economic hardship. Opinions were heard from both sides in a meeting Monday evening. The fisherman feel that the lower river rador used to assess the salmon run was inaccurate and muddy water could be a factor, this allowed fish to cross into Canada, in fact more fish did so this year. The US has a treaty for the number of salmon that can pass into Canada.
The state set fishing limits stating it was related to the treaty however it was argued that the treaty wasn’t followed for the last two years.
The state seems to have taken the fishermen’s concerns onboard and next year commits to better methods to assess salmon counts with sonar counters in different locations and even a moving barge along the river bank.
Fishing along the salmon runs is a much needed source of income for rural Alaskans and has been badly hit in recent times in fact fisherman took their smallest paycheck in 38 years. So it is understandable that they want the best possible assessment of salmon numbers.