For Your Information…
–According to ADF&G data, the in river run estimated by sonar for late run Kenai Kings was 62,740 in 1986 and 27,010 in 2012.
–The Principal age class of Kenai River chinook are salmon that spend 3 or 4 years at sea before returning to spawn.
–The giant “5 ocean/7 year old” fish that made the Kenai River famous may presently make up less than 1% of the late run.
–Eight of the ten largest chinook ever caught on hook and line, including Les Anderson’s 1985 world-record, came from the Kenai River.
–The early run of Kenai Kings is presently at near historic lows, despite being totally closed to sport fishing for 5 years.
–The early run of Kenai Kings are primarily tributary spawners, while late run Kenai Kings are believed to be main-stream spawners that utilize the lower section of the river.
–The Kasilof River late run is comprised of large native chinook, while the May/June early run is made up of smaller hatchery fish and prodigy of hatchery fish that are properly termed “naturally produced” chinook.
–Voluntary hook and release has helped rebound many struggling fisheries world-wide, including but not limited to steelhead, rainbow trout, Atlantic salmon, snook, permit, tarpon, Murray cod, dusky flathead, Australian bass, and numerous species of billfish.
–Realizing the importance of hook and release as an effective conservation practice, Bill Dance and Ray Scott began requiring all B.A.S.S. tournament anglers to successfully release their catch as early as 1972.
–Wikipedia defines catch and release as: “a conservation practice developed to prevent over-harvest of fish stocks in the face of growing human populations, mounting fishing pressure, increasingly effective fishing tackle and techniques, inadequate fishing regulations & enforcement, and habitat degradation.
–According to ADF&G’s study, hook and release mortality on Kenai River king salmon is 7% (early run) and 5% (late run).
–ADF&G’s hook and release study was conducted with multiple hooks, the use of bait, and nearly 15 minutes of handling time per king salmon to insert a radio tag, all factors that increase mortality.
–In ADF&G’s Kenai River hook and release mortality study, the location of the hook, specifically how deep the king took the bait, was determined to be the single-most critical factor whether the released fish survived or not.
–Hook and release mortality on Kenai kings is likely to be EXTREMELY low (maybe as low as 1%) with present day education and regulations that require single-hook, no bait, and keeping the fish in the water upon release.
–Wetting your hands prior to handling a fish intended to be released helps to preserve their protective slime and thereby decrease mortality.
–The term “harvestable surplus” generally refers to the number of fish that can be taken from a resource without negatively affecting the future population size.
–“Conservation” is the wise use and management of a resource with the goal of maintaining sustainability for the future.
“Preservation” denotes a fortress-like approach to nature, walling off human influence in order to maintain the resource in its exact present condition.
–Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines sustainability as: “able to be used without being completely used up or destroyed; involving methods that do not completely use up or destroy natural resources; able to last or continue for a long time.”