Southeast Alaska & Yakutat location map

Commercial Dive Fisheries
Southeast Alaska & Yakutat

The Southeast Alaska/Yakutat dive fisheries include sea cucumbers, red sea urchins, and geoducks. These fisheries are managed by area office management biologists and stock assessment and research is done by the dive fisheries research group. Commercial fisheries for most of these fisheries are opened and assessed on a rotational calendar, where stocks may be surveyed or opened to commercial fishing every second, third, or more years, depending on the species. Additional information about the dive fisheries can be found on our Commercial Dive Fisheries webpage.

The Southeast Alaska Regional Dive Fisheries Association (SARDFA) is a commercial stakeholder organization that provides the department with partial stock assessment funding and has three committees (Sea Cucumber, Geoduck, and Sea Urchin) that provide input to the department on matters concerning fishery management.


Recorded Announcements: For recorded fishery information in Southeast Alaska
please see the Southeast Contacts page.

Fishery Advisory Announcements


Abalone & Kelp

Pinto abalone is another dive fishery species for which a commercial fishery existed; however the commercial fishery has been closed since 1996. Subsistence and Personal Use fisheries for pinto abalone remain open. Although very little data exists to quantify population status, anecdotal information indicates that abalone are at a low level in Southeast Alaska. This species has been listed as a "Species of Concern" by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) since 2004, and underwent review for "Endangered Species" following a petition to NMFS in 2013. Pinto abalone was not listed as "Endangered"; however the concern over the persistently low population level in Southeast Alaska ignited a pursuit to better understand abalone distribution and measure density, size composition, and habitat. In 2015, ADF&G collaborated with the Sitka Sound Science Center, the University of Alaska Southeast, and the US Coast Guard Academy to initiate pinto abalone surveys in Sitka Sound, funded in part by Alaska Seagrant, and summarized in the following video clip funded by Alaska Seagrant and produced by Pioneer Studies of Denver, CO.

Kelp and Abalone: Sentinels for Climate Change from Sitka Sound Science Center on Vimeo.

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