The Alaska Department of Fish and
Game announced that salt water charter guides and crew members will
be prohibited from retaining any fish species while paying clients are on board
their vessel. In addition, Fish and Game announced that the maximum number of
lines that may be fished from a vessel engaged in guided sport fishing may not exceed the number of paying clients on board.
Erik Wander has more.
Regional management biologist Matt
Miller of the Sport Fish Division of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game
said the regulations are not necessarily new. He said they were put in place
largely because the Pacific halibut Guideline Harvest Level, or GHL, for
charter boat anglers in Southcentral Alaska
was exceeded from 2004 to 2007. Miller said the state has several methods at
its disposal for meeting the federally managed halibut guidelines. He said Fish
and Game isn't putting the regulations in place because of violations and that
such prohibitions have been successful thus far.
-- (Miller 1 45 sec. "The same emergency order ... harvest in the GHL limit.")
said the regulations are an attempt to reduce the halibut harvest and keep the
levels below the GHL. He said the emergency order putting the prohibitions in
place is actually a compromise with charter operators.
-- (Miller 2 40 sec. "The emergency order ... we put shoulder seasons on it.")
Fiala, owner of Kodiak Island Charters, which operates the vessels U-Rascal and
Moonshadow, offered a different perspective. He likened charter operators' feelings
about the regulations to a knee-jerk reaction on the part of the state.
-- (Fiala 1 30 sec. "I think we're all for ... unfounded from our point of view.")
Fiala said the
charter fleet is at the mercy of the interests of the commercial industry when
it comes to regulation.
-- (Fiala 2 32 sec. "The problem honestly with ... owners, who are the public.")
prohibiting salt water guides and crew from retaining fish, take effect May
23rd, and will remain in effect through September 1st. For more information,
visit Fish and Game's web site.