Client:

ConocoPhillips Alaska, Inc.

Monitor the subsistence fishery in Nuiqsut, Alaska

Detailed monitoring of the village of Nuiqsut’s annual under-ice fall fishery has been conducted in the Niġliq Channel of the Colville River delta since 1985 and by ABR since 2007. Arctic Cisco (Coregonus autumnalis or qaktaq) harvests have been the focus of fishery monitoring, due primarily to their importance as a staple in the diet of Nuiqsut residents. The goals of the monitoring program are to obtain estimates of the total effort and catch by subsistence fishers. The monitoring program also serves as an early warning system if predicted recruitment or other indicators suggest long-term threats to Arctic Cisco, and other Colville River delta fish populations. ABR biologists conducted on-ice interviews with fishers during the harvest and measured water temperature, salinity, and dissolved oxygen of water in primary fishing areas. Fish donated by the fishers were aged in the lab. We provided CPAI with a brief report that summarized the 2020 results and compared them to previous years.