Thursday, June 4, 2020
F&G Commissioner Doug Vincent-Lang Answers Questions
FISH & GAME COMMISSIONER DOUG VINCENT LANG: Fishing is open and no reason not to do it safely- use social distancing.
Spring bear hunting is open now.
Russian River open June 11 - crowded fishery so be careful.
Question about halibut charters - will current limits stay in effect? A: AK led the efforts to review and relax the halibut restrictions on charters - will happen soon but not yet in effect.
State Parks are open with a few closed due to snow etc locally. Bathrooms and bear bins are functional with regular servicing - use hand sanitizer and keep 6-feet separation. Wipe down common use surfaces like tables etc.
QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC:
Q; Will state officials be enforcing quarantine and mandates in the field? A: We are moving away from mandates and focusing on education and social responsibility.
Q: Are tests available on the airport for travelers?A: some, but we are asking people to get tested at home, before traveling to Alaska.
Guides and charter operators should be working to be safe and educating their clients about the guidelines.
Q: What is the status of UCI personal use fisheries? A: They are kicking off; Kasilof fishery will be open but Kenai city fees are going cashless this year so be prepared for that.
Q: When will halibut charter regulations be relaxed? A: Worst case is July but we are hoping that federal managers will get it done sooner than that. Needs to appear in the federal register. Halibut is a difficult situation because it is managed federally and internationally with Canada.
DLV encouraged residents to use guides and charters to go fish, a real opportunity to get some deals and take advantage of less crowded conditions and perhaps lower prices.
Corrie Feige of DNR cautioned that woodland fires are risky this year because of Covid-19 and the difficulty in staffing fire crews; use caution in running ATVs in grasslands and take measures to prevent forest fires.