Effort to delay NPFMC action by the drag industry on king salmon bycatch has failed. The good steward of America's fisheries health, Glen Merrill of NMFS (National Marine Trawl Service) spoke for delaying Council action until other means were found to control king salmon bycatch. He was joined by Craig Cross of Aleutian Spray Fisheries and John Hendershedt of Fisheries Leadership & Sustainability Forum (ironic) and Bill Tweit of the WDF&W. The motion failed.
Much of the dialog was a pissing match between the catcher vessels and the catcher processors. The State of Alaska argued for a greater allocation to the CVs and the Seattle interests argued for their CPs.
Overall health concerns for the king salmon stocks demanded more immediate action. No cap size or preliminary alternatives were selected but the Council voted unanimously to move ahead with final action on king salmon bycatch restrictions at the April meeting.
Keep yer head down and yer flippers wet.