To protect, maintain, and improve the fish, game, and aquatic plant resources of the state, and manage their use and development in the best interest of the economy and the well-being of the people of the state, consistent with the sustained yield principle. Alaska Constitution Article 8, Sec. 4; AS 16.05.020(2)
- Stock Assessment and Research
- Customer Service and Public Involvement
|A: Result - Department Result|
|A1: Core Service - Management|
Target #2: Enhance angler opportunity by meeting annual projections for number of fish and number of locations stocked as indicated in the Division's updates to the Statewide Stocking Plan.
Comparison of Planned v Actual for Number of Release Sites and Numbers Released
Analysis of results and challenges: Completion of the Ruth Burnett Sport Fish Hatchery in Fairbanks and the William Jack Hernandez Hatchery in Anchorage allowed the division to stabilize fish production while improving the quality of fish released for anglers. During this time, some stocking locations have been eliminated due to lack of effort and/or poor survivals. Despite these targeted reductions, we anticipate angler demand and participation in stocked fisheries to increase in ensuing years. Please consult the Division of Sport Fish Statewide Stocking Plan for details (link provided below).
Target #3: Maintain total annual value of commercial harvests at over $1 billion annually.
Exvessel Value of Commercial Harvests in Alaska
Analysis of results and challenges: The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) contributes to the success of the seafood industry through its scientific management of the various fisheries resources. Scientific management practices allow for the largest harvests that can be biologically sustained over time. ADF&G also plays a vital role by the adoption of regulations and fisheries management plans, in conjunction with the Alaska Board of Fisheries, fishermen, and processors, that provide orderly fisheries producing high quality products in a cost effective manner for utilization by the seafood industry.
|A2: Core Service - Stock Assessment and Research|
Target #1: Update and maintain the Community Subsistence Information System (CSIS), an online public information resource, by including all studies completed during the fiscal year.
Number of Community Studies Formatted for Community Database
Analysis of results and challenges: The CSIS is the State of Alaska's single source of community-level subsistence harvest information. Stand-alone datasets from annual salmon and halibut harvest surveys are planned for merging into the CSIS, so all harvest information can be available through a single portal. As funding levels decline, capacity to add data to the CSIS is affected. Division capacity to add data to the CSIS has increased as processes have become more streamlined over FY2018. FY2017 includes several historical community datasets.
Target #2: Achieve salmon escapement goals in 80% of monitored systems.
Salmon Escapement Goals Achieved
Analysis of results and challenges: Managing commercial, subsistence, and personal use harvests in ways that protect the reproductive potential of fish stocks is the most basic responsibility of the Division of Commercial Fisheries (Division). The Division's success in performing this function is the most direct indicator of program success, as well as the best indicator of continued healthy fish stocks. Success in achieving salmon escapement goals is probably the most common measure of success that salmon managers and research staff apply to their own performance.
The division annually deploys and operates numerous weirs, counting towers, and sonar sites to conduct escapement counts. Aerial and foot surveys are also used extensively in the absence of other means of counting escapement.
In 2016, there were 287 salmon escapement goals in Alaska. Of the stocks with goals, 242 were adequately assessed in 2016 and of those, 72% met or exceeded their escapement goal. For Chinook salmon, there are currently 66 stock specific goals. Despite improvements in meeting Chinook salmon escapement goals statewide since 2012, 2016 saw a decrease to 54%. For pink salmon, there are currently 38 escapement goals in even years. In 2016, only 47% of the pink salmon goals were met or exceeded. There was a decrease in percentage of meeting escapement goals for sockeye, chum and coho salmon as well, but not to the extent of Chinook or pink salmon. For sockeye salmon, 86% of the goals were met –down 1% from 2015. For chum salmon, 77% of the goals were met.
|A3: Core Service - Customer Service and Public Involvement|
Target #1: Increase sales of hunting and trapping licenses to the three-year average.
Sales of Hunting and Trapping Licenses
Analysis of results and challenges: These totals are calendar year and include resident, nonresident and military hunting and trapping licenses. It also includes combination licenses such as Hunting/Fishing. Tag fees paid primarily by nonresidents are not included.
The most common resident license is the Hunt/Sport Fish license.
One incentive for hunters and trappers to buy licenses is confidence that game populations are abundant and that there are good opportunities to hunt and harvest game. The increased number of resident hunters may be a direct result of our Hunter Education program activities. Non-resident numbers likely reflect the state of the economy, as well as increased energy and airfare costs.
In the 2016 legislative session HB137 was passed to increase license fees for both resident and non-resident hunters and fishermen. The increase became effective on 1/1/17, however 2017 licenses were available for purchase well before that date. As a result hunters were able to purchase their 2017 licenses at the reduced 2016 rate. This resulted in a spike of license purchases in 2016.
Target #2: Return sport fishing license sales and revenue collection to 2008 levels to ensure excellence in fisheries management and research for the benefit of sport anglers, the state's economy, and future generations of Alaskans.
Fishing Licenses Issued by Calendar Year
Analysis of results and challenges: Both sport fishing license sales and participation have fluctuated since 2008. Resident license sales remain stable during this period whereas 2016 non-resident license sales exceeded the last high year of 2008. The contemporary challenge for the division is to return non-resident participation in sport fisheries to the 2008 participation threshold, and even though 2016 exceeded that target 2017 slipped back below once again due to reduced opportunities to anglers to ensure adequate escapements.
Current as of February 6, 2019