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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Could someone post a link where I can find a schedule for commercial gill netting?
Also, out of curiosity, does anyone know how many gill netters are licensed in WA and what’s their quota?
Did a quick search of old topics and didn’t find any information.
Thanks,
John
 

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go to wdfw web site, fishing & shell fish, then regulations & seasons, then comercial.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Took awhile, but found the answer to my first question.
Thank you Chris.
Any idea how many licensed gill netters there are in the state? I am guessing that quota is yet to be determined.
 

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I'm not sure of the number but its a set number. Boat Broker in ballard probably has a listing of permits and their price. The number that are fished as opposed to owned varies widely on an annual basis.
 

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JD,

I don't know what the current number of gillnet licenses in WA is. The most are for Puget Sound. It has been limited entry since the early 1970s, meaning no new licenses are added. Only existing license (permit) holders can renew them each year. There quota or harvest allocation varies by year, season, species, and catch area.

Sg
 

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There have been 3 or 4 buy back programs since the 80's. If you what to know call wdfw, they will get you the info, I called about harvest stats last week and in two or three days had the info.
 

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Let us know what you find. I'm curious as to how much $$ it would take to buy out some of the current licenses. IMO if the state did this they would get way more bang for their buck in regards to boosting fish #'s than a lot of these multi-million dollar habitat projects i see going on. That is as long as they didn't just shift the commercials portion over to sport & tribal fishermen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
There have been 3 or 4 buy back programs since the 80's. If you what to know call wdfw, they will get you the info, I called about harvest stats last week and in two or three days had the info.
I'll call next week and post their reply.
 

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Plecoptera,

A common misunderstanding is that by buying out licenses the commercial harvest will decrease. That is not the case. The harvestable surplus is the harvestable surplus (i.e., runsize minus escapement goal = harvestable surplus). The remaining licensed commercial fishermen simply get more time to fish until the "surplus" has been harvested. The status of conservation remains unchanged.

Sg
 

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At present, Washington commercial salmon fisheries are managed as a total scramble fishery; once the gun goes off, each fisher can catch as many fish as he/she can until the quota is reached. Some commercial fishers are much more successful than others, of course, but the fishery as a whole is allowed to fish until they have caught their quota. Other fisheries, such as commercial halibut fishery in Alaska (I think), are managed as an Individual Transferable Quota or Individual Fishing Quota. Each individual who owns a quota is allocated a percentage of the total harvestable fish. Some have argued that this strategy prevents overcapitalization of the industry and improves profits to fishers by avoiding the glut of fish when the season opens. Others have complained that because the quotas can be sold, it leads to industrialization and monopolization of the fishery, at the expense of individual fishers.

Under the IFQ/ITQ circumstance, if you purchased a quota, I would think that if you did not use it, those fish would not be reallocated to other commercial fishers. After all, you could make an argument that you were waiting for that late run of fish - the October sockeye run for example or the January pink run. I know that in the past, some environmental groups have purchased the harvest rights to old-growth timber and then never harvested the trees as a preservation strategy.

Steve
 

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Plecoptera,

A common misunderstanding is that by buying out licenses the commercial harvest will decrease. That is not the case. The harvestable surplus is the harvestable surplus (i.e., runsize minus escapement goal = harvestable surplus). The remaining licensed commercial fishermen simply get more time to fish until the "surplus" has been harvested. The status of conservation remains unchanged.

Sg
Good point. However, are the netters limited in range or are they allowed to fish any Washington waters they please? I would think if they are limited to a specific marine area there could be some real benefit to say buying out all the licenses in MA 7 if there is a specific watershed that may benefit from it. Not sure if thats how it works, but just thinking hypothetically. If there is no range limit then banning nets or buying every license outright would be the only solutions. But again as i had mentioned earlier, whats to stop the "surplus" from going to sport and tribal fishermen. This state seems to adopt the mentality that any surplus above the baseline numbers will go to waste. Lord only know what would happen if they were allowed to spawn.
 

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There are permits for different areas, Puget Sound, Willipa Bay and Columbia river. They are restricted to those areas, you can't fish Columbia river with a willipa bay permit. Non- Tribal net fisheries may be a factor in declining salmon stocks, but they are probably the easiest to regulate and police. I believe we need to change the whole paridigm in which the wdfw operates. We should manage the rescource for the sake of the fish, not for any user group or allowable harvest
 
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