Alaska Halibut Regulations – Homer, Ninilchik, and Seward

Here is the Bottom Line

Alaska Halibut regulations

Our Alaska Halibut regulations for 2020 state that on a Halibut charter this year, you are NOT allowed to retain Halibut on Tuesday or Wednesdays, you are allowed to still fish for halibut but any and all Halibut must be safely released.

Our Alaska Halibut regulations do allow you 2 halibut per day, IF YOU CATCH 2 THE SAME DAY 1 fish can be any size, the other must be 26” or less.  Also, you are allowed 4 Halibut annually.  (so you can catch 4 halibut of any size if you were to fish for 4 days, or you could fish two days and catch 2 any size, and 2 that are 26” or less.)

On a Homer fishing charter, you need to sign your license immediately upon landing a Halibut. So make sure you sign your license before you drop a line back in! Also, make sure you sign the captain’s logbook to confirm with the states reporting papers you caught a Halibut.

 

Important note for Alaska Halibut Regulations: This hasn’t changed, but is one of the most asked questions we get- “can I fish for my kids?” The answer is unfortunately no, Whoever sets the hook, gets the fish on their license. So if your 8-year-old reels on the rod all he can and initiates that hookset, then anyone can help them the rest of the way!

MORE on the Science/Status behind our 2020 Halibut regulations

For our Alaska Halibut regulations this year, the IPHC (International Pacific Halibut Committee)  ramped up their science. Specifically, our human impact on the “spawning potential” of Halibut vs how much we are taking each year. This sexing program through DNA analysis helped us better understand the ratio of male to female halibut being caught Commercially. We learned that we have been fishing harder on the Halibut resource than we wanted to the last 15 years because we were harvesting more females then intended. This year’s Regulations reflect a conservative approach, with partial economic relevance to not bury the charter fleet from going under due to fishing restrictions.  

The second pressing issue…We may see further restrictions due to missing age groups of halibut not showing up in the fishing surveys, if the Juvenile fish are not showing up, then our next move is to prepare for low recruitment, and then ask if our Biologist can find out why? Some data suggests possible lasting impacts on “rookery Halibut grounds” due to bottom trawling. Efforts are being made to lower those bycatch mortality rates, which has come a long way in recent years.

For more information on our Alaska Halibut regulations, review these steps:

  • Always ask the Charter you are booking with for clarification
  • Make sure you have the correct licensing for fishing
  • Contact Alaska Fish and Game —> ADFG Website

Additionally, don’t forget to stay connected with us @thesnowgoose_2 for updates on our fishing season!

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