KYUK AM

Silver Salmon Commercial Season Likely Over On Yukon Following Banner Year

Sep 8, 2017

Fishing skiff on the Yukon River in Marshall, Alaska.
Credit Danielle Ringer / Alaska Department of Fish and Game

After a banner season, the silver salmon run in the lower Yukon River is over unless there is another huge plug of fish. But Fish and Game biologists say that that’s highly unlikely. 

Nets are coming up mostly empty of silvers, and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game expects that the commercial season for silvers has ended for the season in District 1 and does not anticipate announcing any more openings for the area.

The silver salmon-directed commercial fishery opened on September 1, and by regulation could continue until September 10. But unless things change drastically, there aren’t enough fish to justify any more openings.

By initial estimates, 95,991 silver salmon were harvested during commercial openings this year. That marks the third largest commercial silver salmon harvest ever on the Yukon River in Alaska.

Meanwhile, the Yukon also saw one of its highest fall chum salmon runs on record. The state is estimating that about 2.3 million fall chum entered the lower river and that Alaska Yukon fisherman harvested the second largest commercial catch of fall chum ever.