Crab fishery decides against pre-season closing date

Posted: Thursday, October 12, 2000

KODIAK (AP) -- The Alaska Department of Fish and Game will manage the upcoming Bristol Bay red king crab fishery by closing it once the fleet nears its quota, instead of setting a closure date before the fishing begins.

But the fleet needs to be ready to quit fishing on ''very short notice,'' according to Fish and Game. About 255 boats pre-registered to fish the season, which opens Sunday.

With the quota at 7.7 million pounds, Fish and Game biologists expect the season could close within five days.

The department had considered announcing a pre-season closure date as it has done in the past, but decided Monday to manage the season as it develops. Fish and Game will close the fishery based on the fleet's actual and projected harvest rates.

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