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Togiak fishermen offered $5.60 a pound for halibut

June 8th, 2011 | Bristol Bay Times Staff Print this article   Email this article  

Poor weather conditions aside, crews aboard seven boats delivering to Togiak Seafoods are being paid $5.60 a pound for their fish, which were averaging more than 40 pounds apiece, a spokesman for Togiak Seafoods said today.

That's $2.50 a pound more than the halibut fishermen have been paid for the past decade, said Jonathan Forsling, administrator for the Togiak Traditional Council, a partner with Copper River Seafoods in Togiak Seafoods.

There are seven local vessels out there right now and three coming from Dillingham," Forsling said..

Weather conditions, windy with 14-foot seas, have been hard on the harvesters, who are fishing five to 10 miles from shore, he said. The season opened May 1, but because of weather conditions and the herring fishery, the halibut fishery itself didn't pick up until May 15, he said.

Because of the high prices for halibut, more fishermen are getting interested in harvesting the halibut, and next year there will be more, he said.

Sockeye salmon are also starting to show up in subsistence nets and once local subsistence fishermen have put away their subsistence fish, the commercial salmon deliveries will begin, probably about June 15, he said.


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