Yukon salmon fishery numbers show strong season

There were a total of 44 commercial fishing openers for coho and chum in the Yukon River, most of which were held in the lower river districts. Commercial fisherman harvested 191,470 chum and a record-breaking 129,700 coho salmon, raking in almost $1.5 million.

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A fisherman pulls a chum out of the Yukon with a Kenai style dip net. APRN file photo by Kyle Clayton, KYUK - Bethel.
A fisherman pulls a chum out of the Yukon with a Kenai style dip net. APRN file photo by Kyle Clayton, KYUK – Bethel.

That was part of the findings by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in the 2015 season summary for the Yukon River salmon fishery.

Wildlife managers say lower than average coho numbers were observed passing the sonar at Pilot Station. They also say the only coho escapement goal in the Yukon at the Delta Clearwater River was exceeded with more than 19,000 cohos estimated to have made it to their spawning grounds.

The drainage-wide escapement goal of between 300,000-600,000 chum salmon was met with an estimated escapement of 450,000 chum salmon.

ADFG says there was no report on king or red salmon escapement and there was limited information on coho spawning activities due to lack of data and funding.

A report on the subsistence harvest is still pending.