Department of Fish and Game announces new fishing restrictions for coming season

Published: Feb. 26, 2020 at 7:06 PM AKST
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The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced several sport fishing restrictions Wednesday.

In the Anchor River and Deep Creek drainages, sport fishing gear is restricted to only one unbaited, single-hook, artificial lure during the king salmon season effective May 16 through June 30.

ADF&G is also implementing an emergency order in conjunction with the single-hook restriction, reducing the annual limit of king salmon 20 inches or greater in length from five to two fish in the Cook Inlet saltwaters north of the latitude of Bluff Point from April 1 to July 15.

In Palmer, sport fishing for king salmon is restricted to catch-and-release in the Little Susitna River drainage from its mouth upstream to the Parks Highway effective at 6:00 a.m. on May 1 through July 13 in conjunction with an emergency order closing unit 2 of the Susitna River to fishing for king salmon, and limiting king salmon fishing in units 1, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of the Susitna River drainages to catch-and-release. Fishing for other species will remain open seven days a week.

"Any king salmon caught incidentally while fishing for other species may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately," the release says.

Meanwhile, in the Ninilchik River drainage, king salmon bag and possession is limited to only hatchery king salmon

"Hatchery king salmon are recognized by a missing adipose fin and healed adipose fin-clip scar. All naturally-produced or wild king salmon have an adipose fin, may not be removed from the water, and must be released immediately," ADF&G says. "The bag and possession limits for anglers is one hatchery king salmon 20 inches or greater in length and 10 hatchery king salmon under 20 inches."

Fish and Game says king salmon escapement monitoring will begin in May using sonar and underwater video on the Anchor River, Deep Creek and Ninilchik Rivers, and run strengths will be evaluated as the run progresses to determine future management actions.

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