KVI Question: Why are there all those chums going up the creek and so few Chinook?
PIF Answer: Because the Chinook fingerlings stay in the river eating the nutrients from the decayed chum carcasses, or no chums in the creek, no chinook or coho survive to go out.
KVI Question: During the Fish Wars in this State from 1974 to 1983, there were armed commercial fishermen on the water.
PIF Answer: Some were ‘armed’ only with shotguns used to shoot seals (which was legal in those days). The only armed conflicts occurred off Foulweather Bluff when the U.S. Coast Guard held 30 plus unarmed commercial fishermen at bay with locked and loaded .50 machine guns, and when WDF patrol officer Oliver shot an unarmed 23 yr old commercial fisherman in the back of the head with a shotgun loaded with slugs.
KVI Question: If it doesn’t effect me, I don’t care about it.
PIF Answer: The ESA effects everyone, including you. You can find ways to dismiss it, but that wouldn’t save you from the reality of it’s effects.
KVI Question: If you get the nets out of the river, the runs will come back.
PIF Answer: The tribes should get the nets out of the rivers, but that’s how the started the whole process of getting the U.S. Supreme Court to give them the resourse in the first place. But the larger issue is not the fish returning to the river, but the survivability of the fingerlings going out of the river; this is where the greatest mortality occurs (92-98%). This is a habitat issue, and this is what concerns all of us.
KVI Question: Getting rid of the seals and sealions will solve the problem.
PIF Answer: That is partially true. There are too many at this point. Fewer marine mammal predations would greatly help restore the runs, however, there is no political will to do this. Lawsuits would stop the harvest process for long enough that no good would be served. The tribes could take them legally, but even they would not push the political will in this area.