Massive 2022 sockeye run forecast for Bristol Bay; fewer pinks for Southeast

A run of 75 million Bristol Bay sockeye is expected next summer, 44% larger than the 10 year average and above the record of over 66 million fish.

by | November 22, 2021

Filed Under Forecasts

State managers project a 2022 catch of just under 60 million sockeyes from Bristol Bay’s nine river systems and nearly 2 million at the South Peninsula. Conversely, a catch of around 16 million pink salmon is projected at Southeast Alaska for 2022, down from 48 million pinks this summer.

Several salmon summaries for this year are posted on Fish and Game’s commercial fisheries page. Some highlights:

Bristol Bay’s catch of 40.8 million salmon of all species and the preliminary value of $248 million both rank fourth over the last 20 years.

At Prince William Sound, a total harvest of nearly 70 million fish had a value topping $121 million to fishermen, 14% higher than the 10 year average.

For 477 drift gillnetters, the value was just over $25 million, 39% below the 10 year average. Average drift permit earnings were $52,700, compared to a 10-year average of $79,100. The PWS seine harvest value of $71.2 million was 47% above the 10 year average.

 At Kodiak, 300 permit holders went fishing, or just 51%, for a salmon catch that topped 30 million, well above the 10 year average. The estimated value topped $47 million, with Kodiak seiners each averaging $250,550.

The 2021 Upper Cook Inlet catch of 1.7 million salmon was the third smallest since 1975. The value to fishermen of about $14 million was the second lowest in 10 years and 48% below the 10 year average.

At Kotzebue, the catch of 96,492 chums was the lowest since 2007.  Fish weights averaged 7.4 pounds, the lowest on record and the first time since 2012 that chum weights were below 8 pounds.

Other 2021salmon summaries posted so far  include Lower Cook Inlet, Norton Sound and the Yukon.

Tagged as: salmon, Sockeye

About Laine

Laine Welch has covered the Alaska fish beat for print and radio since 1988. She also has worked “behind the counter” at retail and wholesale seafood companies in Kodiak and on Cape Cod.


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