Yukon River chinook salmon run weaker than expected

“Chinook salmon, Yukon Delta NWR.” Photo: Craig Springer, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Via Flickr Creative Commons.
“Chinook salmon, Yukon Delta NWR.” Photo: Craig Springer, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Via Flickr Creative Commons.

State wildlife officials say the chinook salmon run on the Yukon River will be even weaker than expected.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports most of the fish are upstream already in a run that likely won’t reach between 118,000 and 140,000 chinook, an already conservative estimate.

An Alaska Department of Fish and Game news release says about 112,000 chinook salmon have been counted migrating upstream so far.

Limited subsistence fishing and other restrictions have been in place to ensure enough chinook reach Canada to satisfy goals set by the Pacific Salmon Treaty.

This summer’s chum run has been average and will likely reach 1.4 million on the Yukon.