Learning more about Alaska’s Board of Fisheries

Coho salmon were in the river that day, but for how much longer? Photo: Ben Rowell

There is so much going on in Alaska right now. Many are focused on solving our state’s fiscal crisis (yes, it’s a crisis). Others are spending their free time protesting our president (yes, he’s everyone’s president). The smartest Alaskans are outside enjoying the best of what winter has to offer. But there are a small group of Alaskans holed up at Sheraton Hotel in Anchorage, trying to influence policy decisions being made at Alaska’s Board of Fisheries meeting. 

In no way do I claim to be a fisheries expert. Managing Alaska’s fisheries is complex and we should have sympathy for those tasked with doing so and appreciate our neighbors that take the time to become knowledgeable about them. I’m doing my best to learn about Alaska’s fisheries management and rely on Alaska’s media for much of my information.

One source of information that I’ve found incredibly helpful is CraigMedred.news. I’ve been reading Medred since I moved to Alaska in 2003, as he writes about many outdoor activities that interest me. He has strong opinions, many of which I disagree with.

Medred has been following Alaska fisheries issues for over 40 years. While he admits his biased towards sport and personal use fisherman, Medred sites sources and backs up his claims with facts – something missing from many stories on other news sites.

Medred’s story posted on March 1, Selling Out Salmon, is one of the more depressing pieces I’ve read in a long time. He begins by writing “All Alaskans should be embarrassed by what we have allowed to become of the salmon of Cook Inlet. Suffice to say, this is our Columbia River disaster.” This line will get the attention of southcentral Alaskan anglers.

He continues describing how the Board of Fisheries decision to allocate more salmon to commercial fisherman will destroy fish runs in Susitna River tributaries and how we got to this point.

To cap it off, Medred writes that many BOF members “seem to be under the delusion that the way to save the salmon is to kill more of them.” Ouch.

Read Medred’s entire article here.

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