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Yukon officials keeping close watch on fishing season

A quick patrol of Frenchman Lake last weekend saw 10 warnings or tickets issued. 'It's a bit disappointing,' said Carmacks regional officer Dean McLean.

Chinook fishery opens on Alsek River with strict catch limits

Yukon's only public Chinook fishery is open on the Alsek River, with a catch limit of one fish per day. (Yukon River Panel)

If you're planning to fish this weekend, Yukon Conservation officers want to remind you to play by the rules.

A quick patrol of Frenchman Lake last weekend saw 10 warnings or tickets issued. Carmacks regional officer Dean McLean says six boaters were ticketed for a variety of violations.

"You definitely don't like writing that many tickets and you would certainly like to see individuals take the rules and regulations a little more seriously because it does definitely affect fish populations for the future, so in that sense it's a bit disappointing." 

Violations included fishing with barbed hooks, fishing without a licence, and catching more than the allowable limit of fish. Two rods were seized and five fish were forfeited, with potential fines totalling approximately $1,300.

Meanwhile, Yukon's only Chinook salmon fishery is open on the Alsek River. But anglers at the popular Dalton Post site are going to have to work for their catch.

Strict catch limits

Steve Gotch, the regional director for Fisheries and Oceans, says recent changes in the river have made fishing at Dalton Post a challenge.

"There was a pool where a lot of fish used to hold and there was a great opportunity for folks, but with a change in the river dynamics there the fishing opportunities are a little harder to come by," he said. "People have to hunt a little harder for those fish."

The fishery is monitored by counts at the Klukshu River weir. Just over 1,100 Chinook salmon have made it up the Klukshu. Anglers are allowed just one Chinook per day and can't have more than two in their possession.

Meanwhile, a big sockeye run is expected later this summer. Just over 300 sockeye have been counted to date, with a forecast total count of 19,000

Sockeye fishing is closed until at least mid-August to better assess the run size.

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