FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — It has been a record-breaking year for sockeye salmon catches in Alaska’s Bristol Bay Nushagak District this year, an official said.
“We’re approaching 27 million total run,” said Tim Sands, a state Department of Fish and Game area management biologist. “Our average run would be 9 million, so to be triple the average is amazing.”
The region has experienced numerous record-breaking days, Fairbanks television station KTVF reported.
The all-time record for catch in the Nushagak District on one day was more than 1.7 million set on June 30. “Then the very next day we broke it again at 1.8 million,” Sands said.
“For perspective, up until 2017, we never had a single day in the history of this district where we harvested a million sockeye in a day,” Sands said. “We did it seven days (this year).”
Other Bristol Bay areas also are doing well.
“I can tell you right now in Bristol Bay, we’re over 35 million harvest, and we probably have, I’d say, probably close to another 5 million at least to go,” he said.
He is hopeful the strong run will continue next year.
“I’m not a forecaster, but certainly I am optimistic that next year for sure should be a very good year,” Sands said.
This story has been corrected to show that the 27 million total run is for the Nushagak District in Bristol Bay in the first paragraph.