Wild salmon from Kodiak (Alaska, USA)

Facts & figures

Pink salmon
Kodiak, Alaska (VS)


Welcome to Kodiak, the largest island in Alaska, also known as Emerald Isle for its lush green mountainous wilderness. Kodiak is renowned for its abundant wild salmon and large brown bears that call it home. For nearly fifty years, this beautiful island has been home to our salmon fisherman, Bruce Schactler, and his family.

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Two-thirds of the island is comprised of the Kodiak Island National Wildlife Refuge. The majority of the population resides in the northeast of Kodiak, where the eponymous village of Kodiak is located – largely centered around salmon fishing. The entire culture, with all its traditions, is focused on fishing and processing the finest wild salmon. Wild salmon is indeed the pride of the island.

Fishing method

The fishermen catch pink salmon using purse seine nets. From small boats in the river, they encircle the salmon with a net. When they pull the net closed at the bottom, it forms a kind of basket, and they lift the net with the salmon up.

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From late June to mid-August, wild salmon migrate in large numbers from the ocean to Alaska to swim up the rivers. The state of Alaska meticulously monitors how many fish swim up the river to spawn. Depending on the number of salmon swimming upstream and the total catch, fishing is opened or closed. This is determined every day! This ensures that no more fish are caught than is healthy for the fish stocks.

Emerald Isle

Kodiak is also a popular destination for nature lovers. Besides salmon fishermen, around 3,500 Kodiak bears inhabit the island. This subspecies of the brown bear or grizzly bear is the largest bear in the world! Their favorite snack? Wild salmon, of course.

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Wild pink salmon

The pink salmon is the smallest anadromous salmon species in the Pacific Ocean. Being anadromous means it swims from the sea against the current to the river to lay eggs. During this period, males develop a high hump just before their dorsal fin – that's how you recognize the pink salmon. The fish, which is packed with omega-3 fatty acids, gets its name from the pastel pink color of its flesh.

"Since I was a little boy, I caught my first fish with my father."

For nearly fifty years, Kodiak Island has been home to our fisherman, Bruce Schactler. He grew up in the city of Yakima, Washington, but has always been drawn to the outdoors. The connection with nature is what makes fishing so special for him. He caught his first fish with his father: "Now my crew and I fish with great pride for this delicious pink salmon.

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