FAIRBANKS, Alaska The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is closing the Tanana River drainage to sport fishing for king salmon effective 12:01 a.m. Saturday, June 27, 2020.
All king salmon caught while fishing for other species may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately.
These restrictions will remain in effect until further notice.
The estimated king salmon passage at the Pilot Station sonar is below average for years with normal run timing. This indicates that the run may come in well below the lower end of the preseason projection range of 144,000 to 220,000 king salmon.
A conservative management approach is being taken to protect the 2020 king salmon run which, thus far, appears to be weak.
The measures being taken this year are very similar to the restrictions placed upon all king salmon fisheries in 2015. Those restrictions enabled king salmon escapement goals to be met throughout the Yukon River drainage, including the Chena and Salcha rivers.
Restricting the Tanana River king salmon sport fisheries provides the best opportunity to achieve the king salmon escapement goal on the Chena River and to support the conservation measures being taken in Yukon River drainage subsistence fisheries.
If inseason stock assessment information indicates that the king salmon escapement goal in the Tanana River drainage will be met, restrictions may be relaxed.