ADF&G sets TAC for golden king crab fishery

State fisheries managers have set a 2020-21 total allowable catch limit of 3.28 million pounds of Aleutian Islands golden king crab for east of Atka and 2.66 million pounds west of Atka, down from 4.3 million pounds and 2.9 million pounds respectively from the 2019-20 fishery.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game area management biologists at Dutch Harbor announced the quotas on Tuesday, June 16, saying the season opening date would be announced in a subsequent advisory. Vessel registration is to begin 72 hours prior to that opener. The fishery will close on April 30, 2021.

The quota for east of Atka also includes 365,000 pounds of community development quota, or CDQ, under a state program which allocates a percentage of all Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands quotas for groundfish, prohibited species, halibut and crab to eligible communities. For west of Atka, the Adak community allocation will be 296,000 pounds.

For both fisheries an individual holding a 2020 Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission Aleutian Islands king crab interim use permit card must be on board when the vessel is registered and during all fishing operations. Fishermen may concurrently harvest individual fishing quota and CDQ golden king crab in the eastern Aleutian Islands or IFQ and Adak community allocation golden king crab in the western Aleutian Islands, but may not be concurrently registered in both sectors, ADF&G fisheries managers said.