After nearly 10 years of discussion by the NPFMC, trawlers will be held to the same standard as all other AK halibut users.
The IPHC will hold its 100th annual meeting in Anchorage in January where the 2024 Pacific halibut catch limits will be announced.
Focus now is on bycatch of salmon, crab and halibut; herring and other species also will soon be reviewed.
Peltola wants answers to several questions about trawl bycatch of orcas, including claims of “new behavior” by the whales.
Over-emphasis on climate change distracts from near-term actions to save the crab and the fleet, ABSC says.
NPFMC reports cite killer whales feeding on discarded trawl bycatch in 2016, 2017 and earlier.
NOAA is “evaluating” the trawler whale takes. Any other fisherman/gear would immediately be arrested and fined thousands of dollars.
NOAA says it’s “unclear” about lethal takes of orcas by trawlers. “No comment.”
AK communities get clipped to protect halibut stock while trawl bycatch increases, per IPHC.
Halibut catch limits are down in all AK regions for the 10 month fishery; allowable trawl bycatch tops sport charter takes.