ADF&G Salmon Forecasts for 2013
By Ernie Weiss, AEB Natural Resources Director
According to the Alaska Department of Fish & Game (ADF&G), the 2013 estimated forecast for the South Alaska Peninsula pink salmon total run is 7.3 million fish, and the harvest is expected to be 5.7 million. ADF&G considers that to be an average harvest. A harvest of less than 5 million pink salmon for the region is considered weak or poor, and 5 to 7.2 million is considered average. More than 7.2 million is a strong run, and a harvest of greater than 9.3 million pinks is described as excellent.
The 2013 Nelson River estimated total run of sockeye is forecast at 327,000. That’s below the 10-year average of 462,000, but more than the 2012 total run result of approximately 220,000 sockeye. The Bear Lake late run sockeye is estimated at a total run of 328,000 for 2013. Again, that is below the 10-year average of 451,000, but well above the 2012 run of 116,000.
The total estimated run for Bristol Bay sockeye is 26,030,000 fish, which would result in a total commercial harvest of 17.53 million sockeye; 16.59 million in Bristol Bay and 940,000 in the South Peninsula area.
Chignik has a total estimated run of 3,814,000 sockeye, 2.767 million in the early Black Lake run and 1.047 in the late Chignik Lake run. A total commercial harvest for Chignik sockeye is expected to be 3.214 million; 2.581 million for Chignik, 452,000 for the Cape Ignik Section and 181,000 in the Southeastern District Mainland area.
Other forecasts for salmon around the state are relatively stable. The A-Y-K fall chum salmon forecast estimated total run is 1,043,000. The Copper River sockeye total run is expected to be 1.84 million. The upper Cook Inlet sockeye total run is forecast to be 6.7 million.
Pink runs look healthy statewide. Prince William Sound’s total pink run looks to be 6.2 million. The total Kodiak Management Area pink harvest is expected at 17 million. The Southeast Alaska pink salmon harvest is expected to be excellent in 2013 at 54 million fish.
Information compiled from:
ADFG Special Publication 13-03, February 2013, Run Forecasts and Harvest Projection for 2013 Alaska Salmon Fisheries and Review of the 2012 season: