FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 17, 2014
Media Contact: Jeff Wedekind
International Pacific Halibut Commission Announces 2014 Catch Limits
Self-Guided “Unguided” Anglers Allowed Two Halibut Per Day, Guided Anglers Allowed One Halibut Per Day in Southeast Alaska
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON / January 17, 2014 — Ketchikan Alaska Fishing Lodge, specializing in guided charters, unguided and self-guided fishing, today announced rulings of the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) annual meeting in Seattle, Washington. Halibut industry stakeholders attended the meeting which included web broadcasts and public sessions.
The IPHC set catch limits for all directed halibut fisheries on the Pacific west coast from Alaska to California. For the first time in history Alaska’s commercial halibut quota in Area 2C (Southeast Alaska) and Area 3A (Southcentral Alaska) will be shared with the guided sportfish sector under a new Catch Share Plan (CSP). In Southeast Alaska Area 2C anglers on guided charters will be allowed to catch one halibut under 44″ or over 76″ long (similar to the 2013 season). Southcentral Alaska Area 3A, guided anglers will be allowed to catch two halibut — one any size but the 2nd fish must be under 29″ long. More details will be published by the Halibut Commission from the IPHC Annual Meeting.
This is the first time Area 3A guided anglers have had their daily bag limit reduced by the IPHC. Commercial fishermen in Area 3A have also had their quota greatly reduced. Self-guided “unguided” halibut anglers were not included in the CSP with commercial fishermen and will continue to be able to catch two halibut of any size in all areas of Alaska.
“These laws are intended to protect and sustain the halibut fisheries and are increasingly more and more conservative to the sport guided sector; however, I believe new regulations will still provide anglers with an opportunity to enjoy an amazing sport fishing experience at any Southeast Alaska fishing lodge,” said Chinook Shores Lodge owner and operator Jeff Wedekind. “Regulations for unguided anglers in Southeast Alaska Area 2C remain unchanged from the 2013 fishing season, allowing self-guided anglers to keep two halibut of any size in Ketchikan.”
The IPHC 2014 annual meeting opened Monday, January 12 with presentations on the fishery, the 2013 stock assessment and the harvest decision table. It concluded today with Halibut Commission approval of catch limits and regulations.
“Ketchikan is famous for calm water halibut fishing which attracts many guests to our Alaska lodge year after year. These waters make our sport fishing destination especially attractive to self-guided fishermen because the mass bait fish and schools of migrating salmon and cod provide an abundance of food for sought-after species such as salmon and halibut,” Wedekind added.
About Chinook Shores Lodge
Alaska Fishing Lodge, Chinook Shores, is located 13 miles north of Ketchikan International Airport in Southeast Alaska. Accommodations include private waterfront beach houses with full amenities, private dock access, self-guided fishing boats, Alaska charter fishing, quality controlled fish processing and fish packaging services. For more information, visit: www.chinookshores.com.
International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC)
The International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC), originally called the International Fisheries Commission, was established in 1923 by a Convention between the governments of Canada and the United States of America. Its mandate is research on and management of the stocks of Pacific halibut (Hippoglossus stenolepis) within the Convention waters of both nations. The IPHC consists of three government-appointed commissioners for each country who serve their terms at the pleasure of the President of the United States and the Canadian government respectively.