Tribal Community, Fishermen Angry Over Yukon River Fishing Closures

The Yukon River, among many Alaska fisheries closed to salmon fishing or limited to catch and release, is shut down to both chum and king sport fishing, and the locals are frustrated and restless. Here’s more from Alaska Public Media:

Frustrations are building along the Yukon River amid the closures so far. 

Some Alaska Native residents claim that the restrictions are eroding their cultural inheritance. But the managers making the regulations say that opening the fishery could jeopardize the fish runs long-term.

“This is the most disconnection to the river I’ve had in all my life,” Holy Cross resident David Walker said, calling into the weekly Yukon River salmon management teleconference hosted by the Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association. He said that no one nearby is fishing, and described neglected fish camps overgrown with grass.

“I don’t want to get too negative, but I heard one Elder tell me, ‘It’s like cultural genocide,’” Walker said.