The following is courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:
Sport Fishing for Slope Rockfish Opens in Southeast Alaska
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Division of Sport Fish announced today that opportunity for slope rockfish species will be open April 3, 2020 through January 31, 2021.
Resident and nonresident anglers:
- The daily bag limit, and possession limit, is one slope rockfish. No annual limit.
- When releasing any rockfish anglers must use a deepwater release mechanism to return the fish to the depth it was hooked or to a depth of at least 100 feet.
- All vessels must have at least one functional deepwater release mechanism on board and readily available for use when saltwater sport fishing activities are taking place.
Slope rockfish are defined as all rockfish which are not included in either the pelagic (black, dusky, yellowtail, widow, dark and blue rockfish) or the demersal shelf rockfish species group (yelloweye, quillback, copper, china, canary, tiger and rosethorn rockfish). The most common slope species encountered in the sport fishery in Southeast Alaska include: silvergray, rougheye, shortraker, redbanded, and vermilion rockfish. A helpful flyer is available on the ADF&G website https://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/home/pdfs/KeepDontKeepRockfish.pdf, to assist anglers with identification.
Retention of demersal shelf rockfish species remains prohibited in 2020:
In December of 2019, the department announced that retention of all nonpelagic rockfish, which includes both slope and demersal shelf species groups, would be prohibited during 2020. This action was taken to ensure the sustainability of demersal shelf species which are the primary target of the sport fishery. For management purposes, slope rockfish species have historically been included within the category of nonpelagic rockfish for sport fish management actions, although the sport harvest of these species is very low. This action is being taken to provide opportunity for sport anglers to target slope rockfish species which do not share the same conservation concern as demersal shelf rockfish species.
For more information please contact the Ketchikan ADF&G office at 907-225-2859..