Late And Low Runs On The Kuskokwim

Aug 12, 2020

Credit Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Salmon runs continue to be late and low this year. First the kings, then the chums; now the coho appear to be late coming up the Kuskokwim River. Usually Aug. 7 is the midpoint of the coho run, but this year it was not until the Aug. 8 weekend that numbers at the Bethel test fishery increased, and then only modestly. Managers now predict that the final catch will be below average. 

The king, chum, and sockeye runs are mostly over, and the catch per unit effort for all those species was below the 2008 through 2019 average.

The only bright part of the season was the return of red, or sockeye salmon, to Telaquana Lake. As of Aug. 9, a total of 160,861 sockeye had been observed past the weir, the third largest return on record for the lake.