By Randi Somers
The waters of Kachemak Bay, Cook Inlet and the outside of the Kenai Peninsula will open to sport, personal use and subsisence Tanner crab harvest July 15.
Free permits are required and available during business hours from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game office at 3298 Douglas Place, behind Alyeska Tire. Turn west on Douglas off Ocean Drive and look for a blue and white sign.
Harvesters must be named as a household member of the person holding the permit. And harvest information, how many taken and where, must be entered on the permit catch log before leaving the fishing grounds. If more than one permit is aboard the vessel checking the pots, only one permit should record the number of crab released. The permit must be returned to the department no later than Jan. 15, 2012.
The bag and possession limit for legal size male Tanner crab is five. Legal size is five and one-half inches width or greater across the carapace.
The gear limit is two pots per person and no more than two pot per vessel except on the outside of the Kenai Peninsula, from Gore Point to Cape Fairfield. There, gear is limited to two pots per person with no more than six pots per vessel.
All pots must have the proper design so trapped crabs can escape if the pot should go missing. Two escape rings with an inside diameter of 4 3/8 inches must meet the biodegradable escape mechanism requirements. For details, see Alaska Fish and Game regulation 5 AAC 39.145.
And there must be no line floating on the surface of the water except the portion connecting the main buoy to a trailer buoy.
For additional information or clarification contact Alaska Fish and Game’s Carol Kerkvliet with the Division of Sport Fish, 235-1730 or Charlie Trowbridge, division of commercial fisheries at 235-9181. Complete information can be found online at http://www.cf.adfg.state.ak.us/region2/rgn2home.php or http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?
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