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NEWS

2020 Halibut Regulations on the Move

May 15, 2020

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council voted 10-1 today to relax 2020 halibut limits for Alaska’s charter industry.  The Council responded to requests from the charter industry, with support from KRSA, to soften regulations based on an expected drop in harvest due to the COVID-19 crisis. It is hoped that these changes in regulations will help support the charter industry by encouraging greater resident participation.

The changes from the Council will not take effect until cleared by the International Pacific Halibut Commission and the U.S. Commerce Department. Specifically, the North Pacific Management Council is encouraging the IPHC to adopt the following changes:

  • Area 3A (Southcentral AK): Maintain a daily bag limit of 2 halibut, 1 of any size and a second fish equal to or less than 32” (this is increased from 26”). No annual limit and no daily closures (increase from an annual limit of 4 halibut per angler, and daily closures of charter fishing on Tuesdays and Wednesdays).
  • Area 2C (Southeast AK): Maintains a daily bag limit of 1 halibut, increases the retention size to fish under 45” (up from 40”) and maintains retention of fish over 80” (i.e, cannot retain fish between 45 and 80 inches). Effectively bumps small keepers in Southeast from 30 to 45 lbs.

The COVID-19 Crisis may demand small changes in the ways people fish in Alaska, including precautions anglers may consider taking before fishing privately or as part of a charter. You can review information relating to sportfishing during COVID-19 at krsa.com/covid-19.