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Fishing regulations remain in place for Dolly Vardens

Posted: Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Major changes in fishing regulations on the Kenai Peninsula this season involve the king salmon fishery, but some regulations affecting Dolly Varden were approved by the Board of Fish in February 2002 and remain in place.

In general, the season is open all year for Dolly Varden in peninsula fresh water with a two per day and two in possession limit in flowing waters and five per day and five in possession in lakes and ponds.

However, exceptions exist.

In the Kenai Lake drainages, anglers are allowed only one Dolly Varden per day and one in possession, and it must be less than 18 inches long, according to Mark Gamblin, Alaska Department of Fish and Game Kenai area fisheries biologist.

In Kenai Lake drainage flowing water, Dolly Varden fishing opens Wednesday.

In flowing waters from the Upper Killey River down to the mouth of the Kenai River, the limit is two Dolly Vardens of any size per day and two in possession. In lakes and ponds, the limit is five per day and five in possession.

The Upper Kenai River also opens Wednesday for Dolly Var-dens with a limit of one per day and one in possession. The fish must be less than 18 inches long.

"On the Kenai Peninsula, almost all possession limits are the same as bag limits," said Steve Bear, Fish and Wildlife Protection trooper deputy commander for the detachment that includes the Kenai Peninsula.

"What takes fish out of the possession limit is if they are frozen, canned or hard-smoked. People should check the sportfishing regulations for the definition of what preserved in-cludes," he said.

Putting fish on ice in coolers or lightly salting the fish does not put them into the preserved state, according to the regulations.

As with king salmon, Dolly Vardens hooked anywhere other than in the mouth must be released immediately and any fish that are to be released should not be taken out of the water.



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