Proposed Bill to Offer Bounty For Sea Otters Makes Waves

Senate Bill 60 Catches Attention From Critics

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by Victoria Taylor

ANCHORAGE- A bill by Sen. Bert Stedman, R-Sitka, proposes placing a $100 bounty on sea otters harvested legally in Alaska; however, the bill might not get very far in the Senate, despite efforts due to Federal input.

Stedman introduced the bill as an effort to make things easier for anglers, "What I'd like to do to help offset the cost of otters to a higher level and try to minimize their impact as they spread throughout their natural range."

Otters are known for having large appetites and creating a power struggle with fisherman over daily catches. However, According to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services Media Chief, Bruce Woods, SB60 will not go very far, even if it does pass because of the Marine Animal Protection Act..

"The language of the protection act is pretty clear, it says no state may enforce or attempt to enforce the harvest of any protected marine species animal in that state," said Woods.

Stedman does acknowledge the bill is still in a developmental stage and is aware Federal Law could encourage changes, but is not giving up yet, " if there happens to be a conflict with federal law, we can always redirect the effort into shore side issues," said Stedman. 
 

 

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rite said on Sunday, Mar 31 at 11:58 AM

In south east ie. gustavus you could catch your limit of crab in front of boat dock in a few hours with 1 crabpot, now you can soak 10 pots for 2 days and mabe get 1/2 a limit, mabe! but the otter pop. is doing stellar, you see rafts of otters that are 40-50 strong, all over the inlets let the fishermen and hunter harvest the furs, they dont go to waste. have you ever heard of ballance.

Joan said on Saturday, Mar 30 at 6:40 PM

We've all seen those reality fishing shows. I believe they represent the entire fishing industry. Haul those fish and crab in until theres little left. And you can't spare a few measly fish for otters? How typical. We humans are a selfish greedy species.

mark christopherson said on Friday, Mar 29 at 3:46 AM

Good job Stedman! In Sea Otter Sound (Naukati) There are no crab left, and the otter population is booming!

LJ said on Thursday, Mar 28 at 8:52 AM

I can't believe you want to kill otters so people can fish???? This is there HOME and they have the right to live there. This is just WRONG

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