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Defending the indefensible
by John Harrington


April 08, 2004

Thank you Mr. McAllister. Finally someone who will step forward and defend the indefensible. It is interesting that Mr. McAllister does not like to hear us use such words as "decimate" when we talk about the destruction of the herring stock. But that was precisely what Mr. Doherty described in his presentation to us in Ketchikan. There is no argument. The harvest level has been established to precisely decimate the West Behm Canal Herring biomass. My fear is that it will go beyond that, and reduce the biomass to disastrous level of the last time West Behm Canal had a sac roe fishery 20+ years ago.

Mr. McAllister's defense of the science used by ADF&G's and their record is equally misleading. If sac roe fisheries on our inside waters were not mismanaged, but growing as he suggests, then we would still have sac roe fisheries in many places in Southeast. Such as Juneau's Auke Bay, and south of Ketchikan at Kah Shakes and Cat Island, and Lynn Canal, and Kasaan Bay, and Zimonia Straits, and Duncan Canal, and Hydaburg, and Tokeen, and Keku Strait, and Farragut Bay, and Port Houghton, and Stephens Passage, and Port Pybus and Gambier Inlet, and Seymour Canal, and Angoon, and Hoonah, and Idaho Inlet, and Tenakee (Hmm, did I miss any?). But ADF&G's has mismanaged all of the sac roe fisheries in the inside waters. The herring stocks have been reduced in some places and almost totally eliminated in others.

It is insane, (all most by definition,) to keep managing our herring resource the same way, but each time expecting a different result.

John Harrington
Ketchikan, AK - USA

P.S. Extinction is certainly not my concern, but just watch. Reduce the herring biomass dramatically and the environmental extremists will move to federalize Alaska's entire fishing industry.


Related Viewpoint:

"Extinction" of a herring stock not the inevitable outcome by Scott McAllister - Juneau, AK - USA



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