The following press release is courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:
The Division of Sport Fish is increasing the bag and possession limit for pink salmon in Northern Norton Sound, which includes all flowing waters draining into Norton Sound from Cape Darby to Cape Prince of Wales (including the Sinuk, Snake, Nome, Solomon, Bonanza, Flambeau, Eldorado, and Fish river drainages), and the Unalakleet River drainage to 20 fish, effective 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 21, 2018.
Daily escapement counts of pink salmon at enumeration projects throughout Norton Sound are much higher than average and in drainages where there are escapement goals for pink salmon, all goals have been exceeded. In the Nome River, over 750,000 pink salmon have been counted as of July 17. The sustainable escapement goal (SEG) for pink salmon in the Nome River is 13,000 fish. Likewise, in the North River, a tributary of the Unalakleet River which has an SEG of 25,000 pink salmon, over 350,000 pink salmon have been counted as of July 17. Other nearby drainages, while not having escapement goals or enumeration projects, track similarly to the Nome and Unalakleet rivers and are showing large returns of pink salmon as well. Due to the high escapement of pink salmon in the Nome and Unalakleet river drainages as well as continued high returns of pink salmon in other drainages within Norton Sound, an increase in the bag and possession limit for pink salmon from 10 to 20 fish is warranted.