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Protect the herring
by Walter and Rose Northrup


March 04, 2004

Thanks to those that have sent letters to the Governor about the herring fisheries. If you haven't, please do. Here is a copy of the one we sent.

Governor Murkowski
Office of the Governor
P.O. Box 110001
Juneau, Alaska 99811-0001

Dear Governor Murkowski,

We are writing to protest the opening of herring harvest in the West Behm Canal that was announced for the spring of 2004.

I first came to Alaska in 1948 as a salmon troller then in 1954 my family joined me. The herring biomass was many many times what it is now. We have watched with dismay the herring roe fishery at Kah Shakes, Cat Island, Kasaan Bay and West Behm Canal. Our herring stocks in these areas are a very small fraction of what they used to be.

Fish and Game would have you believe our stocks are in fine shape, that they have only moved from Kah Shakes etc. As you should remember Tongass Narrows used to be loaded with herring. The kids used to load buckets with hand dipped herring-no more. As we said before we only have a small fraction of what we had then.

Herring is far to important as a basic food supply for almost all other fisheries to be decimated in this fashion.

We have a hatchery in Neets Bay supplying salmon for not only the commercial fleet but also for the sport and charter fleets taking out hundreds of tourists. The whales have also made a come back to this area which we all love to watch.

Please protect the herring.

Walter and Rose Northrup
Ketchikan, AK - USA




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