Coho Limits Reduced, Anglers Can’t Use Bait When Fishing Copper River Highway Streams

The following is courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:

Copper River Highway Streams Coho Salmon Limits Reduced and Bait Prohibited

(Cordova) – In favor of protecting returning coho salmon and ensuring sport fishing opportunities in the future, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) is prohibiting the use of bait and reducing the bag and possession limit for coho salmon in Copper River Highway streams to two fish. These restrictions are effective 12:01 a.m. Friday, September 9 through 11:59 p.m. Saturday, December 31, 2022. The Copper River Highway streams include all freshwater drainages crossed by the Copper River Highway from and including Eyak River to the Million Dollar Bridge, including Clear Creek at mile 42 downstream of the Carbon Mountain Road Bridge.

“Water levels and fishing conditions in the Copper River Highway streams have not been ideal over the last few weeks. Once high-water conditions subsided, catches of coho salmon have continued to be low for anglers. In addition, during an aerial survey flown on September 6th, low numbers of coho salmon were observed and we need to reduce the sport harvest to help ensure escapement for future coho salmon returns in the Copper River Delta,” stated Jay Baumer Sport Fish Area Management Biologist.

On September 6, the Copper River Delta drainage aerial survey count for coho salmon was estimated at 11,240 coho salmon with an anticipated range at this point in the season of 18,286 – 38,285. This was an incomplete survey, but conditions on the streams that could be surveyed were reported as fair to good. Water levels in the Copper River Delta streams are relatively high and angler effort is currently low but with the aerial survey indicating a lower than anticipated coho salmon run, it is warranted to manage this stock conservatively to ensure the Copper River Delta escapement goal of 32,000 is achieved.

For additional information, please contact the Area Management Biologist Jay Baumer at
(907) 267-2265.