Marine Area 9 salmon season re-opening Feb. 16

WDFW FISHING RULE CHANGE
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091
http://wdfw.wa.gov

February 8, 2017

Marine Area 9 salmon season re-opening Feb. 16

Action: Marine Area 9 will re-open Feb.16. The daily limit for hatchery chinook salmon in Marine Area 9 will be 1 chinook, with an overall 2-salmon limit. All coho and wild chinook salmon must be released.

Effective Date: Feb 16 through April 15, 2017.

Species affected: Salmon

Location: Marine Area 9 within Puget Sound, excluding year-round fishing piers.

Reason for action: Test fishery data collected during January and February indicate there are fewer juvenile (sublegal-size) chinook salmon present in these waters. In addition, sufficient capacity exists to re-open the fishery within the guideline of 6,081 “chinook encounters” – including both retained and released fish – agreed to by the tribal co-managers before this year’s fishery began. Delaying the opening to mid-February allowed the state time to determine a reopening date that will give anglers opportunity later into the spring.

Other information: WDFW will continue to monitor the fishery and will work with sportfishing advisors to determine if any other modifications are necessary to achieve a maximum season in Marine Area 9. Edmonds Public Fishing Pier is unaffected by this rule change and specific regulations for the pier can be found in the Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet.

Information contact: Ryan Lothrop (360) 902-2808

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Snoqualmie River fishing hours restricted starting 9/1/2015

Action: Closed to fishing daily from 2 p.m. until one hour before official sunrise, from the mouth to Snoqualmie Falls.

Effective dates: Sept. 1, 2015, until further notice.

Species affected: All species.

Location: The Snoqualmie River from the mouth to Snoqualmie Falls.

Rules:

Closed to fishing daily from 2 p.m. until one hour before official sunrise. Selective gear rules. Salmon: daily limit 3 plus 1 additional pink, release chinook and chum. Trout: daily limit, 2, minimum size 14 inches. Gamefish: statewide minimum size/daily limit. Closed waters within Puget Power tunnel at falls and within 50 feet of any point on Puget Power’s lower plant #2 building (north bank).
Reason for action: Excessively warm water temperatures and low flows raise concern about increased mortality for released fish. Limiting fishing to cooler morning temperatures reduces hooking mortality.

Additional Information: Temperatures and flow are being monitored and restrictions may lift as water temperatures decrease and flows increase.

Information contact: Jennifer Whitney, District 13 fish biologist, (425) 775-1311.

WDFG Rule Change Spring chinook possession limit, bank angling on the Columbia River above Bonneville Dam

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Effective date: April 13 through June 15, 2015.

Species affected: Spring chinook, steelhead and shad.

Action #1: Allows only hand-casted lines to be used.

Area: Mainstem Columbia River on the Washington shore from Tower Island power lines (approximately 6 miles below The Dalles Dam) downstream to Bonneville Dam

Restrictions: Washington shore only: When the mainstem Columbia River from the Tower Island powerlines (located approximately 6 miles below The Dalles Dam) downstream to Bonneville Dam is open to fishing from the Washington bank for hatchery spring chinook, only hand-casted lines may be used. It is unlawful to use a floating device to set lines for salmon and steelhead during this timeframe.

Reason for action: Based on recent coded-wire tag and genetic analysis, the majority of the fish caught have been destined to areas other than local tributaries.

Action #2: Increase allowed in salmonid possession limit upstream of The Dalles Dam.

Area: Mainstem Columbia River from The Dalles Dam upstream to the Washington/ Oregon state line.

Restrictions: When the mainstem Columbia River from the Tower Island power lines (approximately 6 miles below The Dalles Dam) upstream to the Washington/Oregon border is open for hatchery spring chinook retention in the area upstream of The Dalles Dam the possession limit will include an additional 2 daily limits of salmon in fresh form (up to four adult salmon). Anglers aboard a boat may still only possess one daily limit of salmon in fresh form.

Reason for action: Permanent possession limits allow two daily limits in fresh form, which allows for only 2 fish, given the 1-fish daily bag limit. In an effort to promote this fishery as a destination fishery, this rule will allow anglers to possess a reasonable amount of fish during their stay.

Information contact: (360) 696-6211. For latest information press *1010.

Recreational shrimp fishery opens May 2 in Puget Sound

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Ron Garner with a typical Puget Sound Spot Prawn

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OLYMPIA – Recreational spot shrimp fishing will open May 2 in Puget Sound under seasons announced today by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

This year’s Puget Sound shrimp fishing seasons are similar to those in 2014, although quotas will be lower in some areas, said Mark O’Toole, a shellfish biologist for WDFW.

“Last year, we had better fishing and a higher turnout than anticipated in the Tacoma-Vashon Island area and Elliott Bay, resulting in quota overages,” O’Toole said. “For that reason, those areas are scheduled to be open only one day, but we will reopen the areas later if sufficient quota remains after opening day.”

Puget Sound recreational shrimp season opening days are:

Hood Canal Shrimp District (Marine Area 12): Open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on May 2, 9, 11 and 13.

Discovery Bay Shrimp District (Marine Area 6): Open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 2, 9, 11 and 13.

Marine areas 4 (east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line), 5, 6 and 13 (excluding Discovery Bay Shrimp District): Open daily beginning May 2. The recreational spot shrimp season closes when the quota is attained or Sept. 15, whichever comes first. The exception is Marine Area 13, which closes for spot shrimp May 31.

Marine Area 7 East, South and West: Open May 2 for a one-day fishery and will reopen May 13-16, May 20-23 and May 27-30. In Marine Area 7 West only, the season will be open daily beginning June 1 until the quota is reached or Sept. 15, whichever comes first.

Marine areas 8-1, 8-2, and 9: Open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 2 and May 13.

Marine areas 10 and 11: Open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 2. On May 13, the portion of Marine Area 10 west of a line from West Point to Alki Point will be open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., this includes the Bainbridge Island shrimp fishing ground. Elliott Bay will remain closed on May 13 (Elliott Bay is defined as those waters east of a line from West Point to Alki Point).

In areas 4, 5, 6, 7 (East, South and West) and 13, start times will be one hour before sunrise.

In some central Puget Sound marine areas, the typical schedule of Saturday and Wednesday openings is disrupted Wednesday, May 6, due to an extremely low (or minus) mid-day tide, O’Toole noted. Those areas will be open the following Wednesday, May 13, instead.

Additional dates and times will be announced if sufficient quota remains after the initial fishing days scheduled above. For the latest information on sport shrimp seasons, or for a description of marine areas, visit WDFW’s Recreational Shrimp Fishing website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/shrimp/ .

Also known as prawns, spot shrimp are the largest shrimp in Puget Sound and may grow up to nine inches in length. In all areas of Puget Sound, fishers are limited to 80 spot shrimp per day. A valid 2015-16 fishing license is required to participate in the fishery.

Chinook salmon must be released on the Lewis River

Action: Mainstem Lewis and North Fork Lewis River anglers must release all spring chinook.

Species affected: Chinook salmon

Effective date and locations: March 1, 2015, until further notice.

Mainstem Lewis River from mouth to mouth of East Fork;

North Fork Lewis River from mouth of East Fork to the overhead powerlines below Merwin Dam.

Reason for action: The pre-season forecast is for a return of 1,100 adult spring chinook to the Lewis River in 2015. This is less than the number needed to meet the hatchery escapement goal of approximately 1,350 fish.

Other information: Hatchery returns will be closely monitored in-season.

The mainstem Lewis River and North Fork Lewis River will remain open to fishing for hatchery steelhead. Under permanent rules, the North Fork Lewis River from Johnson Creek upstream will be closed to all fishing during the month of May.

Information contact: (360) 696-6211. For latest information press *1010.

Upper Columbia River and selected tributaries to open for hatchery steelhead fishing

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Action: Allow retention of hatchery steelhead.

Species affected: Hatchery steelhead

General Rules:

1) Mandatory retention of hatchery steelhead, identified by a missing adipose fin with a healed scar at the location of the clipped fin.

2) Daily limit two (2) hatchery steelhead.

3) Selective gear rules and night closure are in effect for all steelhead fishery areas, except the use of bait is allowed on mainstem Columbia River.

4) Adipose present steelhead must be released unharmed and cannot be removed from the water prior to release.

5) Release all steelhead with a floy (anchor) tag attached and/or one or more round 1/4 inch in diameter holes punched in the caudal (tail) fin.

6) Motorized vessels are not allowed on the Wenatchee and Icicle Rivers (Chelan Co ordinance 7.20.190 Motorboat restrictions)

Effective dates and locations:

1) The mainstem Columbia River from Rock Island Dam to 400 feet below Chief Joseph Dam; October 8, 2014 until further notice.

2) The Wenatchee River from the mouth to the Wenatchee River at the Icicle Road Bridge, including the Icicle River from the mouth, to 500 feet downstream of the Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery Barrier Dam; October 8, 2014 until further notice.

3) The Entiat River from the mouth to approximately ˝ mile upstream to a point perpendicular with the intersection of the Entiat River Road and Hedding Street; October 8, 2014 until further notice.

4) The Methow River from the mouth to the confluence with the Chewuch River in Winthrop; October 8, 2014 until further notice. Fishing from a floating device is prohibited from the second powerline crossing (1 mile upstream from the mouth) to the first Hwy 153 Bridge (4 miles upstream from the mouth).

5) The Okanogan River from the mouth to the Highway 97 Bridge in Oroville; October 8, 2014 until further notice.

6) The Similkameen River, from its mouth to 400 feet below Enloe Dam; November 1, 2014 until further notice.

Reason for action: Hatchery-origin steelhead in excess of desired escapement are forecast to return to the upper Columbia River. The fishery will reduce the number of excess hatchery-origin steelhead and consequently increase the proportion of natural-origin steelhead on the spawning grounds. Higher proportions of naturally produced spawners are expected to improve genetic integrity and stock recruitment of upper Columbia River steelhead through perpetuation of steelhead stocks with the greatest natural-origin lineage.

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Anglers can keep two Chinook off Westport beginning Aug. 18

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Kirk Calkins and friends with a nice mixed bag of kings and silvers from Westport Saturday morning.

OLYMPIA – Starting Monday, Aug. 18, anglers fishing in ocean waters off Westport can keep up to two chinook salmon as part of their two-salmon daily limit.

With that change, anglers will be allowed to keep two chinook per day in ocean waters off Westport (Marine Area 2), La Push (Marine Area 3) and Neah Bay (Marine Area 4).

Those fishing Marine Area 1 (Ilwaco) will continue to be limited to one chinook as part of their two-salmon daily limit.

All ocean areas are open to salmon fishing seven days per week. Wild coho must be released in all four areas.

Ron Warren, fisheries policy lead for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), said the previous daily limit of one chinook off Westport was designed to ensure the fishery would remain open the entire season.

“We’ve kept a close eye on the pace of catch in the area,” Warren said. “With sufficient quota remaining, we want to maximize the recreational fishing opportunity through the rest of the season.”

Ocean salmon fisheries are scheduled to continue through Sept. 30 in marine areas 1 and 2 and through Sept. 21 in marine areas 3 and 4. However, a portion of Marine Area 3 will reopen Sept. 27 through Oct. 12.

Fishery managers will continue to monitor the ocean salmon fishery throughout the season and will announce any other changes on WDFW’s website at https://fortress.wa.gov/dfw/erules/efishrules/rules_all_saltwater.j .

Additional information on the ocean fishery, including minimum size limits and catch guidelines, is available in the Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet available at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/ .

Tom Weaver with a beautiful Westport king salmon

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