Southeast Alaska’s commercial salmon purse seine fleet is on track to hit or exceed pre-season forecasts for the region’s pink salmon harvest. Meanwhile, some hatchery chum salmon returns have been a disappointment.

This year’s pink salmon catch is only a fraction of last year’s record setting harvest of 89 million. As of the first week in August, the Southeast harvest was an estimated 15-16 million pinks.

A chance discovery by farmed salmon hatchery workers has spawned a line of skin care products that help cure disorders like eczema and also keeps skin younger looking.

A huge mine waste spill in one of Canada's most productive salmon-producing rivers has Alaska fishermen fearing for their livelihoods and sympathizing with their counterparts in Canada.

"This is just heartbreaking," said Katherine Carscallen, who grew up in Dillingham and gillnets in Bristol Bay.

"This is what we've been afraid of happening here, and just seeing it play out in someone else's life the way it could happen here is terrible," she said.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has stopped reporting the number of Kenai River red salmon going past its sonar counter 19 miles upriver from the mouth. The reason? Tens of thousands of pink salmon, also known as humpies, have flooded the river, making it difficult for biologists to differentiate between the two species.

he U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is asking a federal judge to dismiss as premature a lawsuit by the group behind the proposed Pebble Mine.

In a court filing, attorneys for the EPA say the agency has not made a final determination yet on potential restrictions on development on the Pebble deposit.

Commercial fishermen appear to be having success in harvesting pink salmon in the Nushagak District. KDLG’s Mike Mason has the details.

Perhaps the biggest fish story this week is the Dungeness crab fishery in Southeast, which is seeing its best season ever. The total catch this year is pegged at nearly 6.5 million pounds for 150 crabbers who are getting about $3/pound, up 50 cents from last year. The summer dungie fishery closes August 15 and reopens October 1.

Gov. Sean Parnell has asked a federal agency to buy about 1 million cases of canned pink salmon to ease a glut that has weighed down prices for Alaska fishermen this year.
Parnell made the request in a letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack this week. He wants the USDA to purchase $37 million worth of canned pink salmon under a federal law that allows for buying surplus food from farmers and donating it to food banks or other programs.

Voters could be asked to decide whether to ban setnets in certain parts of Alaska under a court decision made Wednesday.

The Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance, or AFCA, filed a ballot initiative petition in November seeking to ask voters whether to ban setnets in urban parts of the state, which would primarily impact Upper Cook Inlet setnetters.

One of the most prestigious colleges in the United States is using Bristol Bay’s massive salmon fishery as a teaching tool. KDLG’s Mike Mason has the story.