Pat Shields: “The Kenai River King Salmon escapement estimate for Tuesday, August 13th was 274 fish, bringin the season total to 14,971 in escapement. The minimum goal is 15,000 fish. A decision was made earlier today that the East Side Set Net fishery will not fish tomorrow, Thursday, August 15th. This ends the season for set netting on the east side for the 2013 season.”
That was the decision broadcast by the Alaska Department of Fish & Game this afternoon. Drifters will have one final opening tomorrow before they’re also closed.
Paul Shadura II, one of the Board Members for the Kenai Peninsula Fishermen’s Association said it was a travesty to keep set netters waiting for weeks only to come so close to the goal and not be opened.
Shadura: “As of Tuesday evening there was enough kings in the river, they’re 29 kings short from attaining their 15,000 escapement goal, actual spawning goal, and that’s above the 1,600, 1,700 that were harvested in-river, above the counter. So, we feel that the Department’s now managing on social management again and not managing for the science.”