Lynn Canal herring under review for possible threatened/endangered listing

Federal fisheries officials are examining the status of Pacific herring stocks in Lynn Canal. If research shows the small fish in trouble, they could be listed as threatened or endangered. Erika Phillips of the National Marine Fisheries Service says the agency agreed to examine the stock after being petitioned by the Sierra Club’s Juneau chapter.

On April 2, 2007, we, NMFS, received a petition to list the Lynn Canal (Alaska) stock of Pacific herring, Clupea pallasi, as a threatened or endangered species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). After review, we find that the petition presents substantial scientific and commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted. We are initiating a review of the status of the Lynn Canal population of Pacific herring, and we request data, information, and comment on the subject action. Specifically, we are soliciting information regarding population structure and stock delineations of Pacific herring in Southeast Alaska, the Gulf of Alaska, and the North Pacific Ocean; population trends and ecology of Pacific herring in Lynn Canal and Southeast Alaska waters; habitat requirements and current habitat conditions; known and anticipated threats to the viability of the population; and efforts being made to protect the species.

Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage