Quota Share Commercial Fisheries Update

The 2016 quota share halibut fisheries opened on March 19. It is estimated that the following commercial landings, in pounds and numbers, were made in the Alaskan IFQ and CDQ fisheries and in the British Columbian IVQ fishery through May 18, 2016.

Washington South Coast Area Sport Fishery Closing

In the Marine Area 2 (Westport-Ocean Shores) northern nearshore fishery, 1,650 pounds were landed during the 7-day period ending May 15, leaving 57 pounds to be harvested. Insufficient quota remains for further openings. Therefore the Marine Area 2 nearshore fishery will close at the end of the day on Friday, May 20 for the remainder of the season.

Washington North Coast Area Sport Fishery to Reopen

The preliminary catch for the Washington North Coast primary sport halibut fishery in Marine Areas 3 (La Push) and 4 (Neah Bay) through May 14 was 71,618 pounds, leaving 36,412 pounds to be harvested. Fishery managers anticipate this will sustain one more day of fishing. After consultation with the sport industry, and taking into consideration the amount of pounds remaining, the Washington North Coast primary sport halibut fishery in Marine Areas 3 and 4 will reopen for one day on Saturday, May 28. State fishery managers will then review the catch and announce if sufficient quota remains for future openings.

The International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) has determined that fishing period limits will be required during the 10-hour, June 22 non-treaty directed commercial fishing period in Area 2A to avoid exceeding the 193,364 pound catch limit. The June 22 fishing period will begin at 8:00 AM and end at 6:00 PM Pacific Daylight Time. The fishery is restricted to waters that are south of Point Chehalis, Washington (46°53’30” N. latitude) under regulations promulgated by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). Fishing period limits as indicated in the following table will be in effect for this opening.

The Washington South Coast primary sport fishery in Marine Area 2 (Westport-Ocean Shores) closed at the end of the day Wednesday, May 11, 2016. State fishery managers project the recreational harvest in that area to have been taken and any quota remaining from the primary season will be added to the separate quota set aside for incidental halibut retention in the Marine Area 2 northern nearshore area. This nearshore fishery remains open to halibut fishing seven days per week until further notice.

Quota Share Commercial Fisheries Update

The 2016 quota share halibut fisheries opened on March 19. It is estimated that the following commercial landings, in pounds and numbers, were made in the Alaskan IFQ fishery through April 19, 2016 and in the British Columbian IVQ fishery through April 18, 2016. No Alaskan Community Development Quota (CDQ) landings have occurred thus far in 2016.

The International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) will be conducting research operations off northern California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska during 2016 and will be selling halibut caught and sampled during the operations to offset costs associated with conducting the research. This news release is intended to notify the industry of the IPHC plan to sell fish and to update lists of interested buyers in ports where IPHC-chartered boats will offload catch.