Department of Fish and Game warns against illegally dumping fish waste

(Alaska Department of Fish and Game)

ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - With salmon arriving now in many Alaska fisheries, the Department of Fish and Game (DFG) is reminding anglers and dipnetters of hefty fines that accompany illegally dumping fish waste. Not only does doing so attract bears into residential areas, but the DFG says it can also result in fines ranging from $300 to $1,000.

Each summer illegally dumped fish waste is found in areas all around Anchorage the Mat-Su Valley, and on the Kenai Peninsula, according to the DFG. Dave Battle, a wildlife biologist for the department, believes the people doing this just may not be aware of the dangers.

“Fish attract bears,” said Battle, “and brown bears, particularly, may aggressively defend those food sources.”

The DFG encourages anglers to chop up waste into tiny pieces and toss them into quick moving water. Those who remove fish from the fishing site and fillet or process them elsewhere should follow these recommendations:

If allowed, fish waste should be taken directly to a waste transfer station or to the landfill. Another option is to freeze fish waste to eliminate odors and then place it out with garbage on the morning of trash pickup. The DFG says do not place waste out the night before pickup.

Here are some places the Department of Fish and Games says you can drop off your waste:

The Central Peninsula Landfill located at Mile 98.5 Sterling Highway 2.5 miles south of Soldotna accepts fish waste free of charge from 8 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. seven days a week in summer.

Fish waste can also be deposited at Peninsula transfer facilities, including those in Cooper Landing, Kasilof, and Ninilchik, but in smaller quantities; all fish waste must be double-bagged in plastic trash
bags with a limit of two bags dropped off per day.

Anchorage Regional Landfill, the city’s Central Transfer Station, and the Girdwood Transfer Station all accept residential, non-commercial fish waste.

Matanuska-Susitna Borough Solid Waste accepts small quantities of non-commercial fish waste (less than 150 pounds) at the Central Landfill located at N. 49th State Street in Palmer. It must be double-bagged and tied in leak-proof bags.

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