The following press release is courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:
The Division of Sport Fish is opening all waters of the Unalakleet River drainage to sport fishing for king salmon effective 12:01 a.m. Thursday, July 19, 2018. In addition, the use of bait is allowed in these waters.
Sport fishing for king salmon is open in all waters of the Unalakleet River drainage with a bag and possession limit of one fish, with no size limit, and an annual harvest limit of two fish.
Daily escapement counts of king salmon at the North River tower on the Unalakleet River have increased recently, and the midpoint of the Sustainable Escapement Goal (SEG) of 1,900 fish is projected to be exceeded. According to the Subdistricts 5 and 6 of the Norton Sound District and the Unalakleet River King Salmon Management Plan, when the subsistence fishery in the Unalakleet River drainage is opened to at least two 36-hour periods per week, or the subsistence fishery in the marine waters of Subdistricts 5 and 6 is opened to at least two 48-hour periods per week, the sport fish bag and possession limit for king salmon in the Unalakleet River drainage is one fish, with no size limit, and an annual harvest limit of two fish.
Inseason stock assessment information for the Shaktoolik and Inglutalik river drainages indicate that king salmon escapements there are below average and will remain closed to sport fishing for king salmon and to the use of bait. In addition, all other freshwaters of southern Norton Sound that do not have inseason escapement information including the Koyuk, Ungalik, and Golsovia river drainages will remain closed and the use of bait is prohibited in these waters.
For additional information contact Brendan Scanlon, Northwest and North Slope Area Management Biologist, 907-459-7268.