Russian River anglers get another bump in bag limits amidst strong run

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - The Russian River salmon run is still hot, and starting Wednesday, anglers can take even more of the early-run sockeye home.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game issued another Emergency Order (EO) bumping up the limit from six to nine, with a total allowance of eighteen in possession.

That’s because over 45,000 fish have already made it to the weir above the falls, where the fish are counted. The so-called escapement goal--the number of fish that biologists allow to make it to the weir before increasing limits--is normally between 22,000 and 42,000.

More than 5,000 fish have made it to the weir every day since June 11, with a peak of over 8,000 fish in one day on June 12. Last year on this date, just over 6,000 fish had made it that far.

The EO also encompasses the Upper Kenai River from Skilak Lake to just past the Russian River Sanctuary. The new limit goes into effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 19.

“We opened the waters of the sanctuary and increased the bag limit from three to six last week and sockeye salmon keep pouring into the Russian River,” said Colton Lipka, the Area Management Biologist. “With these numbers, it is appropriate to increase the limits and allow anglers an opportunity to harvest more sockeye salmon.”

The emergency order is in effect until July 7.

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