Chum catch down during second day of DIPAC fishery

Salmon were jumping out of the water in Amalga Harbor.

Nearly 100 boats showed up for the special opening.

The F/V Trejo pulls in its nets.

Salmon were jumping out of the water in Amalga Harbor. (Photo by Heather Bryant/KTOO)

Nearly 100 boats showed up for the special opening. (Photo by Heather Bryant/KTOO)

The F/V Trejo pulls in its nets. (Photo by Heather Bryant/KTOO)

Fishing slowed down for the eighty-five boats that participated in yesterday’s purse seine fishery in the Amalga Harbor special harvest area. This was the second opening for returning DIPAC chum salmon.

While the effort was similar to last week’s, commercial fisheries area biologist Dave Harris says the catching wasn’t as robust.

“Kind of all depends on the timing of the chums coming back and it appears that the chum have been early this year. The peak was actually in last week’s opening, so we did catch that peak period.”

During last week’s July 4th opening, 84 boats harvested 645,000 chum salmon.

DIPAC executive director Eric Prestegard says the fish are selling for 55-60 cents a pound.

“Last week, they caught almost 5 million pounds so that’s almost $3 million in six hours.”

This is only the second year this fishery has been open and Prestagard hopes DIPAC can continue to do it every year.

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