Wednesday, 1 July 2009


I meant to post the story when tundra drums first posted it, but I guess you'll have to get the reprint:

MARSHALL, Alaska - Fishermen from an Alaska village say they defied a closure on the Yukon River so they could catch king salmon, a revered food in the area.

State and federal authorities have severely restricted king salmon on the Yukon this summer to help the struggling run recover. Commercial fishing for king salmon hasn't been allowed, and subsistence fishing has been limited to two, 18-hour openings each week.

I hope I don't need to say how conflicted I am about this. The half of me in science and management does not like this. Nope. Stupid, stupid idea, and a great way to further ruin things for our kids. The part of me that's not thinks it's bull shit for the state to telling people what they can't feed our family with.

When people tell us researchers or managers that we don't know what it is, and we don't understand, they're wrong. I know. And I'm really aware. And other people are too. Sometimes, it takes a really `cold calculation`, though, to do not what's "good..." but what's right.


CabinDweller said...

I share your uneasiness. I think the smartest way to have pursued protest fishing would be to make it a symbolic act. Perhaps take one fish each. Or take one fish for every home in Emmonak and give it to them.

I mean, we are still talking about the Barrow Duck In to this day. Why not the Emmonak 'Fish In'?

Then, you can't be accused of fishing and damaging a disastrous run but you can make your point and call further attention to the issue.

Allmycke said...

I don't have the expertise to throw my vote on the government side in this - but it's easy to understand why people fish, given the opportunity. The stories from this past winter about how people had to choose between eating or heating puts this situation in a light that is hard to ignore. I can't say what's right or wrong - a Barrow Duck In or an Emmonak Fish In doesn't put food on the table, but lokks good in the meaid reports.

Anonymous said...