Share story

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — State environmental officials say Lake Ontario Chinook salmon fishing in 2017 was the best in more than 30 years.

The Department of Environmental Conservation has surveyed Lake Ontario boat anglers to estimate fishing quality and harvest annually since 1985. Surveys showed anglers had the highest catch rate ever recorded last year.

DEC estimates that anglers caught 96,000 and kept nearly 54,000 Chinook salmon in 2017.

Chinook or “king” salmon are the largest Pacific salmon in the Great Lakes and are fierce fighters on the line. Lake Ontario produces some of the largest Chinooks in the Great Lakes, with many exceeding 30 pounds.

The fishery is supported by both stocked and naturally reproduced fish.