Its great to see pink salmon getting the reputation they deserve. Technically, its the cleanest fish in the ocean. The short life cycle allows very little mercury to accumulate, resulting in a very healthy piece of fish. I found this cool video to go along with this recent article.
Its the Salish Seas abundant season, a flashing, thrashing wriggling show as spotters on the reef netter give the holler everyones waiting for: “Fish! Lets haul!”Standing on spotting ladders 16 feet up, they see pink salmon headed for their reef net and the race is on. The fishermen have about 10 seconds to gather the fish before they get away.Working just off the beach in the cold, green waters off Lopez Island, theirs is an ancient fishing technology.Reef netting is about as low-tech as it gets: four guys on two barges with a net strung between them. They work in pairs, with a lookout atop the ladder on each barge, and a fisherman on each deck waiting for the call to action.Some days, thats all anyone does: Watch and wait. And then the pinks boil in the net, and the fishermen haul for all they are worth to bring them up and onto the boat. A splashing applause of fish, the pinks thrum the deck, ankle deep, as the fishermen work to slide them into the opening to a net pen below deck.The fish are brought on board selectively, with the fishermen pushing away anything they arent supposed to catch. Their wiggling catch arrives alive, not smushed as in a purse seine, or ripped and bleeding from a gill net.The boated fish zip across the deck, a mass of wet silver bright life, disappearing below to swim about in the net pen. Its not an efficient fishery: Pulling up fish 100 or so at a time is quaint by commercial standards.”We are a floating museum,” says Jack Giard, working his 54th fishing season. There are only 11 non-Indian commercial reef-fishing licenses left in the Washington state, with fishermen working off Lummi, Lopez, Shaw and Stuart islands.
- A Parade of Pink Salmon In Southeast Alaska (juneautek.wordpress.com)
- Record Pink Salmon Run in Southeast Alaska (juneautek.wordpress.com)
- B.C. fishermen outraged by salmon wasted by First Nations (canada.com)
- Beach seining for salmon raises question of waste (theglobeandmail.com)
- West Seattle scene: In pursuit of pink salmon at Lincoln Park (westseattleblog.com)