A rugged, whitewater river flowing northward through deep canyons, the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. New River Gorge National River in West Virginia encompasses over 70,000 acres of land along the New River, is rich in cultural and natural history, and offers an abundance of scenic and recreational opportunities.
Big Southern Butte is one of two domes rising from a sea of basalt near the center of the eastern Snake River Plain in Idaho. The butte is one of the largest volcanic domes in the world, but at 300,000 years old it is also one of the youngest. Hikers who trek to the 7,550-foot high summit are rewarded with spectacular panoramic views. Photo by Devin Englestead, BLM Upper Snake Wildlife Biologist.
First light at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. Established in November 22, 1939, the refuge has provided a critical stopover and wintering spot for thousands of sandhill cranes, geese and other waterfowl for 75 years. Bosque del Apache's sandhill crane population has multiplied from 18 birds in the 1840s to more than 20,000 birds today. Photo by Kim Hang Dessoliers (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Under Authority of 50 CFR Part 100.10 and .19 36 CFR Part 242.10 and .19 USDA Forest Service
Special Action No.: 3-KS-03-14 Issued at: Bethel, Alaska May 23, 2014
Effective Date: May 27, 2014 12:01 a.m.
Expiration Date: July 18,2014 11 :59 p.m. unless superseded by subsequent Special Action
TULUKSAK TO THE REFUGE BOUNDARY
This Special Action closes king salmon fishing to all users in conservation section 3 from Tuluksak to the boundary of the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge near the village of Aniak. This action follows the conservation strategy discussed with the members of local Tribes, public, Kuskokwim River Salmon Management Working Group, and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game over the previous 10 months.
50 CFR 100.27(e)(4)(ii) is amended to add:
Effective 12:01 a.m., Tuesday, May 27, 2014 subsistence Chinook (king) salmon fishing with hook and line gear is closed and subsistence fishing is restricted to the use of set gill nets with 4-inch or less mesh size not exceeding 60-feet in length in salmon conservation Section 3. Additionally, a fish wheel used to take fish must be equipped with a livebox that contains no less than 45 cubic feet of water volume while in operation. The livebox must be checked at least once every six hours while in operation and all king salmon must be returned to the water alive.
This area is defined as that portion of the Kuskokwim River and its tributaries upstream from a line between ADF&G regulatory markers located approximately half a mile upstream of the Tuluksak River mouth to the refuge boundary located along a north-south line intersecting the 1101 E Tudor Road, MS 121 Anchorage, Alaska 99503 (907) 786-3888/(800) 478-1456 Fax (907) 786-3898 2 western tip of "Rabbit Island" directly east and across Aniak Slough from the village of Aniak. This section does NOT include the slough (locally known as Utak Slough) on the northwest side of the Kuskokwim River adjacent to the Tuluksak River mouth. Excluded waters are non-salmon spawning tributaries: the Whitefish Lake drainage near Aniak and those portions of Discovery, Birch, and Swift creeks more than 100 yards upstream from the mouth of these rivers, are open with any mesh size gill net and are not affected by these closures.
Since 2010, the Kuskokwim River has experienced poor king salmon returns and 2013 was the lowest return on record. The 2014 State of Alaska king salmon forecast is for a return of 94,000 fish (range of 71,000- 117,000). The State of Alaska drainage-wide escapement goal is 65,000- 120,000 king salmon. If the 2014 return is within the forecast then there would be enough fish to meet escapement goals and provide for very limited king salmon subsistence harvest. The majority of escapement goals were not met in 2013 and all weir assessment projects had the lowest on record. Given consecutive years of low king salmon returns and non-achievement of escapement goals significant conservation measures are warranted.