Coho Restrictions Hit Cowlitz, Kalama, Lewis, Other SW WA Tribs

THE FOLLOWING IS AN EMERGENCY RULE CHANGE NOTICE FROM THE WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Southwest Washington tributary coho fisheries modified 

Action:

  • Anglers limited to 1 adult coho on lower Cowlitz and lower Kalama Rivers.
  • Release all adult coho on the Lewis River, Cedar Creek (including all tributaries), and Washougal River.
NICOLE GREENWOOD CAUGHT THIS COWLITZ RIVER HATCHERY COHO IN MID-OCTOBER ON A MAG LIP. (VIA JAROD HIGGINBOTHAM, YAKIMA BAIT)

Effective date: Nov. 23, 2019 through Dec. 31, 2019.

Species affected: Coho salmon.

Locations and salmon rules:

  • Cowlitz River, from the mouth to the posted markers 400 feet below the Barrier Dam:  Min. size 12”. Daily limit 6. Up to 1 adult may be retained. Release all salmon other than hatchery coho.
  • Kalama River, from the mouth to 1,000 feet below the fishway at the upper salmon hatchery (i.e. Kalama Falls Hatchery):  Min. size 12”. Daily limit 6. Up to 3 adults may be retained of which up to 1 may be an adult coho. Release all salmon other than hatchery Chinook and hatchery coho.
  • Lewis River, from the mouth to the overhead power lines below Merwin Dam:  12” min. size. Daily limit 6. Up to 2 adult Chinook may be retained. Release all salmon other than Chinook and hatchery jack coho.
  • Cedar Creek, from the mouth upstream, including all tributaries:  Min. size 12”. Daily limit 6. Up to 2 adult Chinook may be retained. Release all salmon other than hatchery Chinook and hatchery jack coho.
  • Washougal River, from the mouth to the bridge at Salmon Falls:  Min. size 12”.  Daily limit 6. Up to 1 adult Chinook may be retained. Release all salmon other than hatchery Chinook and hatchery jack coho.

Reason for action: Coho salmon returns to tributary hatcheries in the Lower Columbia Basin have been below levels needed to meet broodstock collection goals for some programs. These programs can utilize coho salmon collected at hatcheries located in the above tributaries when brood shortfalls occur. Modifying coho fisheries on these rivers will provide additional fish for these hatchery programs and help ensure future hatchery returns and fishing opportunities.

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