State closes preseason king salmon run on Kenai

KENAI, Alaska — For the first time since 1965, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has announced a preseason closure of fishing for early run king salmon in the Kenai River.

The Peninsula Clarion reported that the early run sport fishery for kings will be closed beginning May 1 through June 30 from the Kenai River mouth upstream to Skilak Lake and the Moose River from its confluence with the Kenai river upstream to the northern edge of the Sterling Highway bridge.

Kings may not be targeted or retained.

The emergency order announcing the king fishing closure was released Thursday — well in advance of mid-May when angler pressure begins to pick up on the king salmon.

In 2013, the early run was restricted to catch-and-release, but that drew criticism.

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