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Премия рунета 2017

High Pink salmon runs are expected in Kamchatka

06 july 2018
The scientific data says there is a billion pink salmon species approaching the coast of the Russian Far East. This news shadowed the new changes of Fishery Regulation Rules for the Far-Eastern basin which came to effect recently.

Salmon fishing season of the previous year was completely unsuccessful for many Far-Eastern fisheries. Majorly, that was because of the contradictions between owners of different types of fishing gears. The government learnt the lesson and signed a number of changes of Fishery Regulation Rules for the companies which fish in the Russian Far East. The changes ban the simultaneous usage of set gillnets and pound nets on the same fishery plot.

If a fishery plot owner chooses to use set gillnets, he will not be able to install more than 20 of them. The length and height of set gillnets cannot exceed 120 meters and 9 meters respectively. The distance between lines of nets should be none less than 120 meters. Also, it is not allowed to install gillnets in checkboard order.

These measures seem to be highly useful. A pound net is economically effective only during high Pink salmon runs. In years, when fishermen knew that Pink salmon runs would be low, they preferred to have some kind of insurance and accompanied expensive pound nets with cheap gillnets. That resulted in higher pressure on valuable salmon species, such as Sockeye, Chum, and Coho.

However, according to this year forecast, fishermen will not need any gillnet insurance after all. Scientists from the Pacific Research Fishery Center (TINRO-Center) predict that a billion species of Pink salmon (1.2 million metric tons) are approaching the coastline of the Russian Far East.

“There is another hidden danger,” says Sergey Korostelev, the Marine Program Coordinator of WWF-Russia’s Kamchatka/Bering Sea Ecoreginal Office. “If the forecast is correct, there is a possibility that on-shore fish processing plants can fail to process such amount of fish. If there will be too many species let through to the spawning grounds, it can result in mass death of both spawners and raw. The same situation happened in Kamchatka 35 years ago. Mass death of Pink salmon at the spawning grounds in Kamchatka in 1983 resulted in almost complete disappearance (in amounts reasonable for the industry) of Pink salmon for the next ten years. Only in 1992 the even-numbered year’s population of Pink salmon was able to grow to commercially advantageous amount. We witnessed a change of dominant generation from odd-numbered to even-numbered year’s population, and continue to witness the results of this change nowadays.”

Taking the forecast into account, the Russian Federal Fishery Agency encourages fishermen of the Russian Far East to use all fish processing fleet to support on-shore plants and prevent the tragedy of 1983.

For additional information please contact
Project coordinator (Sustainable fishery project coordinator)