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Fishing News Release & Updates
Trout season opens for ALL Oregon waters May 25 - Oct 31 2013
Beginning Jan. 1, 2010, you will need an "Aquatic Species Prevention Permit" for your drift boat, canoe or inflatable pontoon boat over 10 feet long. Permits are transferable to other non-motorized boats, but each boat on the water needs a permit. Permits go on sale Dec 1 wherever ODFW licenses are sold and online. For more information see the news release.
Fall chinook fishing on Snake River begins Sunday, Sept. 1
ENTERPRISE, Ore. – Oregon fishery managers announced today the upper Snake River will open to hatchery fall chinook fishing beginning this Sunday, Sept. 1.
The river will be open from the Oregon –Washington border to the deadline below Hells Canyon Dam and will remain open until Oct. 31, or until a closure is announced. In addition, the reach from Cliff Mountain Rapid (at river mile 246.7) upstream to the deadline at Hells Canyon Dam will be open from Nov. 1-17.
The daily bag limit will be six adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon. Anglers can also keep and unlimited number of fin-clipped jack chinook. Chinook jacks are salmon between 15 and 24-inches long.
This is the fourth year in a row that this fall chinook fishery has been open, after decades of being closed due to low returns. Fall chinook returns to the Snake River have rebounded in recent years due to increased hatchery production and ocean productivity.
Fishery managers at the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife are expecting a run of more than 41,000 fall chinook salmon to return to the Snake River above Lower Granite Dam this year.
“Each year we are seeing more and more Oregon anglers take advantage of this advantage of this unique opportunity,” said Jeff Yanke, ODFW district fish biologist in Enterprise. “We’re hoping that another large return combined with liberal bag limits will translate into lots of great fishing.”
Only barbless hooks may be used on this stretch of the Snake River, and anglers should consult the 2013 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for other rules that may apply.
Snake River fall chinook migrate over 800 miles and pass eight mainstream dams to reach Hells Canyon, the farthest they will travel in Oregon.
Annual sturgeon bag limit increases to two
SALEM, Ore. – Oregon fishery managers announced today that the statewide annual bag limit for sturgeon will go to two fish effective April 1, 2013.
Since Jan. 1, the annual statewide bag limit has been one legal white sturgeon total for all zones statewide. According to Steve Williams, ODFW fish division deputy director, the increased bag limit is in response to a recent decision by the State of Washington to set its statewide annual sturgeon limit at two for 2013.
“The concurrent regulations should eliminate the confusion about how many sturgeon can be retained by anglers with licenses from both Oregon and Washington,” Williams said.
“While the new bag limit in Washington isn’t scheduled to go into effect until May 1, we understand the state is considering a temporary rule that would push up the effective date to April 1 to match Oregon’s action,” Williams added.
Fish that have been caught and retained since Jan. 1 will count toward the new two fish bag limit.
Anglers also are reminded that in addition to using barbless hooks for sturgeon, they are now required to use barbless hooks for all salmon, steelhead and trout fishing in the Columbia River, Willamette River below Willamette Falls, and several tributaries. Though the new barbless rule went into effect Jan. 1, so far only about 80 percent of anglers are complying with the new barbless hook rule, said Lt. Dave Anderson, Oregon State Police.
“With the spring chinook season heating up and the number of anglers increasing, we’ll be stepping up our enforcement efforts,” Anderson said.
States adopt sturgeon season above Bonneville
CLACKAMAS, Ore. – Bonneville Pool sturgeon anglers will again see a split season for white sturgeon on the Columbia River in 2013. Fisheries managers from Oregon and Washington this week approved a white sturgeon retention season in Bonneville Pool consisting of winter and summer periods. The winter retention period will take place from Jan. 1 through Feb. 10, or until a harvest guideline of approximately 1,150 fish is achieved. The summer season is expected to begin in mid-June to harvest the balance of the 2,000 fish harvest guideline.
In The Dalles and John Day Pools, white sturgeon retention will open Jan. 1 and continue seven days per week until harvest guidelines are achieved as follows: The Dalles Pool – 300 fish; John Day Pool – 500 fish.
In the area from McNary Dam upstream to the Oregon-Washington border, white sturgeon retention is allowed Feb. 1 through July 31.
Under permanent rules, white sturgeon retention below Bonneville will open Jan. 1 seven days per week from the river mouth upstream to the Wauna power lines at river mile 40. From the Wauna power lines upstream to Bonneville Dam, the season will open Jan. 1 three days per week, Thursday through Saturday. Modifications to the 2013 retention seasons in the lower Columbia will be adopted by the Oregon and Washington Departments of Fish and Wildlife at a Joint State hearing scheduled for Jan. 30 at the Sheraton Airport Hotel in Portland.
The size limit is 38-54 inches fork length from the mouth of the Columbia upstream to The Dalles Dam and 43-54 inches fork length from The Dalles Dam upstream to the Oregon/Washington border.
Anglers are reminded that under Oregon fishing rules, the annual bag limit in 2013 will be one white sturgeon per year in all waters under state jurisdiction, down from the five fish annual bag limit in previous years. The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission adopted the reduced bag limit at its Dec. 7 meeting in response to the continued decline of legal-size white sturgeon in the Columbia and Willamette rivers.
The lower Willamette River downstream of Willamette Falls (including Multnomah Channel and the Gilbert River) will remain closed to sturgeon retention on Jan. 1, Oregon fishery managers will consider a retention season for this area at the Joint State hearing on Jan. 30. Upstream of Willamette Falls, white sturgeon retention is open year round under permanent rules.
Commission approves new rules for Columbia River fisheries
December 7, 2012
PORTLAND, Ore. – The Fish and Wildlife Commission today approved a new management framework for Columbia River fisheries that includes more salmon for the sport fishery, a gradual shift of commercial gillnets to enhanced off-channel areas and development of new commercial selective gears for the mainstem. The Commission also set new barbless hook requirements for sport anglers beginning in 2013.
The adoption of the new management framework is the culmination of several months work by a two-state workgroup comprised of members of the Oregon and Washington Commissions, advisors and staff.
“We are very grateful for the time and effort of our Commissioners, our sport and commercial advisors, our colleagues in Washington and our staff in developing a new framework for Columbia River fisheries in a very challenging environment,” said Roy Elicker, ODFW director.
“The challenge going forward will be to implement this plan to the benefit of both the sport and commercial fishing industries,” he added.
Sport share of mainstem salmon harvest to increase
Both sport and commercial fisheries are constrained by the allocation of wild fish they can catch. The plan approved by the Commission generally shifts more allocation to the sport fishery.
Increased production in off-channel areas
Commercial gillnets will gradually be moved from the mainstem of the lower Columbia River to off-channel select areas. To balance the loss of mainstem fish to the commercial fleet, the number of hatchery fish in the off-channel areas will be increased. An additional 1,000,000 spring chinook, 920,000 coho, and 500,000 select area bright fall chinook smolts will be released each year during the transition period, with additional increases in future years.
The plan also would allow for some continued commercial fishing in the mainstem, particularly to harvest excess hatchery fish. In addition, the plan would allow commercial fishing in the mainstem using more selective gear such as seine nets. The commercial efficacy of alternative gear will be tested during pilot fall salmon fisheries in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Barbless hooks, new Columbia River endorsement required for sport anglers
The Commission declined to delay the barbless hook requirement on the Columbia River and selected tributaries. Therefore, beginning in 2013, barbless hooks will be required in the mainstem Columbia River up to the OR/WA border and some lower tributaries.
For 2013 the following tributaries will be restricted to barbless hooks:
Google fishing map points to NW Oregon trout locales
CLACKAMAS, Ore. – The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife today introduced a new Fishing Map to help anglers find trout stocking locations in the department’s Northwest Region.
The Google-based map is available via the ODFW website and details 111 sites around the Willamette Valley and North Coast areas of Oregon where the department releases more than 1.2 million hatchery-reared rainbow trout. ODFW releases rainbow trout ranging in size from “legals” about eight inches long to “trophies” that can weigh in excess of 10 pounds. The planters are produced by several ODFW trout hatcheries. Trout stocking is one of ODFW’s largest and most popular recreational programs.
The fishing map can be accessed from the department’s website from links in several places, including the Trout Stocking Schedule page, weekly Recreation Report and Where and How to Fish page. The map allows viewers to zoom in for a close-up at the sites in their choice of map, satellite and terrain view. Clicking on the icon opens a text balloon with site photos, links to nearby campgrounds and other points of interest, fish species, and links to ODFW’s weekly recreation report, trout stocking schedule and sport fishing regulations. The Google engine is also capable of generating GPS coordinates and directions from any starting point. Sites are designated with blue icons that look like a fish head and hook and line.
Trout fishing is the most popular fishery in the state, according to a survey of anglers the department conducted in 2006, and the new fishing map is designed to build upon that popularity. Of those anglers surveyed in the 2006 study, 73 percent said they had fished for trout in the past year. That equates to approximately 420,000 anglers.
“This is our most popular fishery, and the trout we produce at our hatcheries are a very important component of trout fishing,” said Rhine Messmer, ODFW Recreational Fisheries Program manager for Inland Fisheries. “A lot of the time these fisheries provide entry-level opportunity for our younger anglers and their families at ponds, lakes and streams across the state. These fisheries are by nature some of the easiest to participate in and are important to angler recruitment.”
Because it is so heavily populated, ODFW releases a large share of its hatchery-reared trout within the department’s NW Region, which is the most populous area of the state and spans 13 counties, including Benton, Clackamas, Clatsop, Columbia, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Multnomah, Polk, Tillamook, Washington, and Yamhill. The cost of the trout stocking program is covered primarily through the sale of Oregon fishing licenses.
Freshwater fishing is a huge economic driver for Oregon. A 2009 study for the department by Dean Runyan and Associates estimated that the freshwater fishing contributed nearly $200 million to the state’s economy every year. While the study didn’t break sales down by fresh water species, which would also include salmon, steelhead and other types of fish, the economic impact of trout fishing on the state’s economy is nonetheless significant.
“Given the high level of participation there is no question this is a high value fishery,” said Messmer.
For more information, visit ODFW’s website at www.dfw.state.or.us.
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