There is no doubt that Alaska has a prized resource in its king salmon. Without careful regulation and monitoring, there easily could be no salmon left for future fishing tours in Alaska, which would result in tragic consequences. That is why the state and many anglers take precautions to avoid overfishing the rivers and oceans of this vast state. Here are four ways that show how Alaska conserves its salmon population:
- Fishing licenses: Requiring a fishing license mainly tracks the number of anglers using resources. It gives regulatory agencies a means to check fish populations against the number of anglers, and can often check overfishing before it creates large impacts. Besides tracking numbers, it is also part of biological research. Licensed anglers are an excellent source of data regarding the numbers and health of existing fish colonies. While some people may see a license as an inconvenience, it is actually a partnership. Your fees help support conservation so you and others can continue enjoying this engaging outdoor sport.
- Fishing seasons: Setting harvest seasons allows fish populations to recover and leave them undisturbed during vulnerable spawning times. Each species has a different season, with king salmon only being available for a few months. This is due to their popularity but also their life cycles. By keeping fishing from becoming a free-for-all, the populations remain stable, and other people can enjoy catching fish for generations to come.
- Habitat conservation: Communities, agencies, tribal governments and even universities unite to ensure the protection of salmon habitat. Salmon cannot survive unless they have a place to live, and that means conserving places that sustain a needed water temperature, provide food resources and offer cover from predators. While Alaska does not frequently suffer the massive land clearing of other states, there are still efforts to support fish habitat and angling opportunities.
- Voluntary measures: Conservation requires cooperation, and fortunately, there is foresight to work with these goals. Guide services will limit their fishing trips and anglers agree to catch and release during some seasons. Basically, when people become educated on the importance of conservation, they are frequently more than willing to help the cause. It is often just a matter of understanding the problem and possible solutions.
Alaska maintains the healthiest king salmon in the nation. Unfortunately, the number returning to spawn decreases each year, and there is a strong interest in finding out why that happens. Conservation measures appear to maintain the populations, and sometimes increase them. It takes everyone working together to make this happen, and when you fish in Alaska, you can also be part of these solutions.
While these efforts may appear to be a lot of work, never let them dissuade you from enjoying the great outdoors from a fishing boat. Phantom Tri-River Charters offers fishing tours in Alaska that follow preservation measures while also assuring everyone has a chance at their next big catch. Call us today to see what is in season and plan your next adventure.