One woman’s idea to save a whale, and aid a community

One woman’s idea to save a whale, and aid a community

Katherina Audley is afflicted by fish fever, but she didn’t contract the dire malady from sautéing a flounder. She was born in Alaska, where the five varieties of Pacific salmon flourish, and all are totemic species for the locals. Alaskans spend what Lower forty-eighters may consider an inordinate amount of time catching, preserving, preparing, eating and thinking about fish. And not just salmon, but halibut, rockfish, grayling, steelhead and rainbow trout, char, northern pike, and whitefish.

“When I was going to school at Cal (BA in Ancient Religion, 1995), I was discouraged that the sport fishing limit [off the California coast] was two salmon a day,” says Audley, “so I went back to Alaska after I graduated and worked the gill-net fishery in Bristol Bay. We caught 80,000 pounds of sockeye salmon, and that pretty much took care of my urges for a while.”

This is an excerpt from an article first published by Cal Alumni Association. Read the original article here: One woman’s idea to save a whale, and aid a community. 


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