Category Archives: Headlines

A PAIR OF SUCCESSFUL YOUTH HUNTERS POSE WITH A PHEASANT AND HOUND AT EE WILSON WILDLIFE AREA. (ODFW)

Registration Open For Free Sept. Youth Pheasant Hunts In Oregon

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Registration is now open for ODFW’s free pheasant hunts for youth (age 17 and under) happening around the state in September.

The events are being held in Baker City, Central Point, Corvallis, Eugene, Hermiston, John Day, Klamath Falls, La Grande, Madras, Portland, The Dalles (Tygh Valley). See dates below and register online, at a license sales agent or at an ODFW office that sells licenses

ODFW and partners stock pheasants at these special hunts; quail and dove may also be hunted. Volunteers often bring their trained hunting dogs to hunt with participants. Some events also begin with a shotgun skills clinic, so participants can practice clay target shooting before hunting.

A PAIR OF SUCCESSFUL YOUTH HUNTERS POSE WITH A PHEASANT AND HOUND AT EE WILSON WILDLIFE AREA. (ODFW)

A PAIR OF SUCCESSFUL YOUTH HUNTERS POSE WITH A PHEASANT AND HOUND AT EE WILSON WILDLIFE AREA. (ODFW)

With the exception of a mentored youth hunt at EE Wilson Wildlife Area near Corvallis on Sept. 20, these events are only open to youth who have passed hunter education. (ODFW has many hunter education classes and field days available before the events.) An adult 21 years of age or older must accompany the youth to supervise but may not hunt.

“If your child made it through hunter education but is still new to the sport, this is a great way to get them started,” says James Reed, ODFW hunter education coordinator. “These events happen before regular pheasant seasons open and are a great opportunity for kids to get out hunting.”

ODFW stresses safety at these events. Both hunter and supervisor must wear a hunter orange hat, eye protection and a hunter orange vest—equipment provided by ODFW at the clinics to anyone who doesn’t have it. Hunters also need to check in and out of the hunt.

The hunts are free, though youth hunters need a valid hunting license ($14.50) and Harvest Information Program validation (free) to hunt. Youth hunters age 14-17 also need an upland game bird validation ($8.50). Purchase online, at a license sales agent or ODFW office that sells licenses. Licenses and tags will not be sold at the events.

While most areas have a hunt both Saturday and Sunday, youth hunters may only sign up for one hunt. They are welcome to hunt stand by on the other day.

 See the links below or the event listings on www.odfwcalendar.com for more details including who to contact for more information.

·         Baker City, Baldock Slough Wetlands, Sept. 26 and Sept. 27

·         Central Point, Denman Wildlife Area, Sept. 19 and Sept. 20.

·         Corvallis (near Camp Adair), EE Wilson Wildlife Area, Sept. 26 and Sept. 27.

·         Corvallis (near Camp Adair), Mentored Youth Pheasant Hunting Workshop, Sept. 20, E.E. Wilson Wildlife Area. Youth who have not yet been hunter education certified may attend this event.

·         Eugene, Fern Ridge Wildlife Area, Sept 12 and Sept. 13. Registration not necessary but appreciated.

·         Hermiston, Irrigon Wildlife Area, Sept. 26 and Sept. 27

·         John Day, Upper John Day Valley, Sept 19 and Sept. 20.

·         Klamath Falls, Klamath Wildlife Area, Sept. 12 and Sept. 13.

·         La Grande, Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area, Sept. 19 and Sept. 20

·         Madras, Willow Creek Private Lands, Sept 19 and Sept. 20, sign up for one of several three-hour hunting shifts.

·         Portland, Sauvie Island Wildlife Area, Sept. 19 and Sept. 20

·         Tygh Valley/The Dalles, White River Wildlife Area, Sept. 19 and Sept. 20.

ANGLERS BATTLE A STEELHEAD NEAR LEWISTON DURING A RECENT SUMMER. IDAHO FISHERY MANAGERS SAY IT'S UNLIKELY THE GEM STATE WILL SEE RESTRICTIONS OR CLOSURES WASHINGTON AND OREGON MANAGERS HAVE BEEN FORCED TO ENACT DUE TO EXTENDED HOT, DRY CONDITIONS. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

IDFG Says Fishing Restrictions Unlikely, Despite Earlier Warm Water

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE IDAHO DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Warm water temperatures came earlier than usual to many of Idaho’s fishing waters, but it’s unlikely to lead to fishing closures or restrictions similar to those that neighboring states have implemented.

“In many streams, what we’re seeing this year with water temperatures happens every year, we’re just seeing it sooner than normal,” said Jim Fredericks, Chief of Idaho Department of Fish and Game’s fisheries bureau.

A heat wave in late June and early July spiked water temperatures, but many waters have since cooled to normal summer temperatures. That doesn’t mean fish haven’t been stressed, particularly trout and other coldwater species, but conditions are not likely to affect fish populations now or in the near future based on current water conditions.

ANGLERS BATTLE A STEELHEAD NEAR LEWISTON DURING A RECENT SUMMER. IDAHO FISHERY MANAGERS SAY IT'S UNLIKELY THE GEM STATE WILL SEE RESTRICTIONS OR CLOSURES WASHINGTON AND OREGON MANAGERS HAVE BEEN FORCED TO ENACT DUE TO EXTENDED HOT, DRY CONDITIONS. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

ANGLERS BATTLE A STEELHEAD NEAR LEWISTON DURING A RECENT SUMMER. IDAHO FISHERY MANAGERS SAY IT’S UNLIKELY THE GEM STATE WILL SEE RESTRICTIONS OR CLOSURES WASHINGTON AND OREGON MANAGERS HAVE BEEN FORCED TO ENACT DUE TO EXTENDED HOT, DRY CONDITIONS. WATER TEMPS AT THE CONFLUENCE OF THE SNAKE AND CLEARWATER ARE TYPICALLY COOLER THAN ELSEWHERE BECAUSE OF RELEASES FROM DWORSHAK RESERVOIR, NOT FAR UPSTREAM ON THE LATTER RIVER. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

Warm water is a common occurrence during summer, and several factors come into play when it happens. Summer migrations into headwaters, cold tributaries or around underwater springs are a normal part of life for trout in many Idaho rivers. In lakes and reservoirs fish move to deeper, cooler water. Many rivers, or portions of them, have dams that allow water temperatures and flows to be adjusted.

The feeding activity of the fish also helps minimize the problem. Fish that can’t find cooler water typically become lethargic and decrease or stop eating, which means slow fishing and a corresponding drop in fishing pressure.

While closures in neighboring states won’t affect Idaho, Oregon and Washington have implemented restrictions on the Snake River where it shares a border with Idaho.

Joe DuPont, Fish and Game’s Clearwater Region fisheries manager, said fishing pressure for sturgeon, and catch rates in the Snake River from Idaho anglers, are likely to be low.

“I’m confident the sturgeon in the Hells Canyon reach of the Snake River are not going to be impacted by anglers due to temperatures,” DuPont said. “Catch rates drop so much that very few get caught. You can’t stress them out if you can’t catch them.”

The department is monitoring the Snake River, and he noted that during spring, two dead sturgeon were reported by multiple callers to the department.

“When a sturgeon dies, we get repeated calls,” Dupont said. “If large numbers were dying, we would know about it.”

Fish and Game officials have the authority to implement emergency fishing closures in extreme cases, although they aren’t expected.

That’s not to say anglers won’t see some noticeable effects from warmer. Anglers and others may see localized fish die offs, a few of which have already occurred. Anglers may also notice the effects of stress on individual fish, such as parasites, lesions and other physical signs.

Anglers can also reduce stress on fish by not fishing during the warmest parts of the day, and if they plan to release the fish, land them quickly and carefully release them. If anglers see fish go belly up after being released, they may voluntarily stop fishing until the water cools. Early mornings are typically when the water temperatures are coolest during the day.

The window when temperatures are above a comfortable level for fish are typically short-lived, and most fish can withstand the temporary stress. As water cools, typically in late summer when days get shorter and night temperatures drop, fish resume their normal routines and anglers will likely see catch rates improve.

Groups Plan To Sue Feds Over Leavenworth Fish Hatchery

Two organizations today said they intend to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over operations at Leavenworth  National Fish Hatchery.

The Wild Fish Conservancy and Center for Environmental Law and Policy say that the facility doesn’t have a National Pollution Discharge Elimination System permit, a violation of the Clean Water Act.

According to the groups, the hatchery discharges excess levels of phosphorous into Icicle Creek, as well as other liquids, and hasn’t had an NPDES permit since 1979.

Spring Chinook and summer steelhead are raised at the 75-year-old hatchery just south of the Bavarian-themed village it’s named for.

“We are aware of the lawsuit; however, it is the practice of the service not to comment on ongoing litigation,” said USFWS spokeswoman Amanda Smith.

SCOTT FLETCHER HOLDS A PAIR OF SPRING CHINOOK CAUGHT OUT OF ICICLE CREEK EARLIER THIS YEAR. THE HATCHERY THAT REARED THEM AS SMOLTS IS THE SUBJECT OF A PENDING LAWSUIT. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

SCOTT FLETCHER HOLDS A PAIR OF SPRING CHINOOK CAUGHT OUT OF ICICLE CREEK EARLIER THIS YEAR. THE HATCHERY THAT REARED THEM AS SMOLTS IS THE SUBJECT OF A PENDING LAWSUIT. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

DAN RICE AND HIS 2014 SOUTH KING COUNTY-PSA DERBY-WINNING 20.85-POUND CHINOOK. (SKC-PSA)

$3,500 Top Prize At Aug. 1 South Sound Salmon Derby

Chinook fishing in Area 10 may have been scrubbed, but not the South King County Chapter-Puget Sound Anglers Salmon Derby!

The 14th annual running goes down Aug. 1 with Areas 11 and 13 still available for trying to land that $3,500 winning king.

DAN RICE AND HIS 2014 SOUTH KING COUNTY-PSA DERBY-WINNING 20.85-POUND CHINOOK. (SKC-PSA)

DAN RICE AND HIS 2014 SOUTH KING COUNTY-PSA DERBY-WINNING 20.85-POUND CHINOOK. (SKC-PSA)

This year’s derby features a new category, active military or veteran, with a payout of $500 for big fish.

Organizers add that top prizes for kids have also been upped to $300, $150 and $100, and all youngsters at the awards ceremony at Point Defiance Boathouse with a derby ticket will receive goodies.

Last year’s winning fish weighed 20.85 pounds, but in 2012, a 27 took top honors.

Tickets are $35 (under 13 free), and are available at Sportco, Outdoor Emporium, Auburn Sports and Marine, Sportsman’s Warehouse, Narrows Marina,  the boathouse and pugetsoundanglers.net.

A VIEW ACROSS PART OF THE SIMCOE MOUNTAINS OF EASTERN KLICKITAT COUNTY. (WASHINGTON RECREATION AND CONSERVATION OFFICE)

Simcoe, 4-O, Columbia River Ranch Buys, Other Projects Funded By State

Fish and wildlife habitat, river access, boat ramp and shooting range projects all scored grants coming out of Washington’s 2015 legislative session.

Though highly ranked acquisitions for critters and recreation had been axed by the state Senate‘s original Capital Budget, ultimately, funding was restored for ongoing buys, as well as the start of a big new one in a public-land-poor part of South-central Washington.

A total of $55 million was granted to the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program, and according to the Recreation and Conservation Funding Board, which disburses the money, these projects received grants:

Asotin County

$4,000,000 million to buy 1,900 more acres of the 4-O Ranch above the Grande Ronde and upstream of Boggan’s Oasis

$324,500 to build a new boat ramp at Heller Bar on the Snake.

Clallam County

$371,969 to improve the Port Angeles Boat Haven ramp

Cowlitz County

$1.06 million to buy 549 acres between Merrill Lake and the Kalama River

$474,000 to renovate the Martin boat ramp and access near the mouth of the Lewis

$68,985 to build new and expand structures at the Cowlitz Shooting Range

Douglas County

$2,821,250 to buy 8,200 more acres of the Grand Coulee Ranch for habitat for rare grouse

A VIEW ACROSS PART OF THE COLUMBIA RIVER RANCH, WHICH WDFW BEGAN ACQUIRING FROM A WILLING SELLER LAST YEAR. (WDFW)

A VIEW ACROSS PART OF THE COLUMBIA RIVER RANCH, WHICH WDFW BEGAN ACQUIRING FROM A WILLING SELLER LAST YEAR. (WDFW)

Ferry County

$799,300 to buy 115 acres along the Kettle River and build a rough boat ramp

Grays Harbor County

$498,000 to improve the South Montesano boat ramp on the Chehalis River

Island County

$1,664,000 to improve and expand moorage at Cornet Bay

Jefferson County

$339,024 to expand Port Townsend’s Boat Haven ramp to a two-laner with float

King County

$16,803 to expand the sporting clays range at the Seattle Skeet and Trap Club

Kitsap County

$1,075,000 to renovate the 230-foot-long Port of Waterman fishing pier

Kittitas County

$1,700,000 to buy 370 acres along Taneum Creek, critical salmon and steelhead habitat

Klickitat County

$2,459,750 to buy the first 2,700 acres of a 22,000-acre parcel in the Simcoe Mountains

A VIEW ACROSS PART OF THE SIMCOE MOUNTAINS OF EASTERN KLICKITAT COUNTY. (WASHINGTON RECREATION AND CONSERVATION OFFICE)

A VIEW ACROSS PART OF THE SIMCOE MOUNTAINS OF EASTERN KLICKITAT COUNTY. (WASHINGTON RECREATION AND CONSERVATION OFFICE)

Okanogan County

$534,500 to log and burn parts of the Sinlahekin Wildlife Area to restore habitat

Pacific County

$875,000 to buy 564 acres and 2 miles of undeveloped shoreline in Willapa Bay for fish and bird habitat

$563,780 to add slips and a pump-out station and other fixes at the Tokeland Marina

Pierce County

$1,100,000 to buy over 1,000 acres along the Mashel River and Busy Wild Creek to conserve salmon and steelhead habitat

Spokane County

$474,000 to buy the old Chapman Lake Resort and secure access to one of far Eastern Washington’s few kokanee waters

Thurston County

$570,000 to improve the access site to Lake St. Clair, one of the state’s few channel catfish waters

Walla Walla County

$150,000 to build a covered range at the Walla Walla Gun Club

Whatcom County

$216,765 to replace the aging floats at the Fairhaven boat launch

$74,262 to extend the Squalicum Harbor boat ramp, where low tides can make it difficult to launch

Yakima County

$61,850 to improve the Yakima Valley Trap Range

 

 

SKYKOMISH RIVER HATCHERY STEELHEAD WILL BE PART OF THE DISCUSSION FEDERAL FISHERY OVERSEERS WILL HAVE WITH ANGLERS THIS WEEK. JACOB MANDELLA CAUGHT THIS ONE AT REITER PONDS, THE RELEASE SITE, DURING MOISTER TIMES A COUPLE WINTERS AGO. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

NMFS Puget Sound Hatchery Steelhead Workshops Tonight, Tuesday Evening

Federal fishery overseers will hold a pair of workshops about Puget Sound hatchery steelhead starting tonight in Mount Vernon and Tuesday evening in Lynnwood.

Up for discussion is the development of draft environmental impact statements for WDFW’s winter programs on the Nooksack, Stillaguamish, Skykomish, Snoqualmie and Dungeness.

SKYKOMISH RIVER HATCHERY STEELHEAD WILL BE PART OF THE DISCUSSION FEDERAL FISHERY OVERSEERS WILL HAVE WITH ANGLERS THIS WEEK. JACOB MANDELLA CAUGHT THIS ONE AT REITER PONDS, THE RELEASE SITE, DURING MOISTER TIMES A COUPLE WINTERS AGO. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

SKYKOMISH RIVER HATCHERY STEELHEAD WILL BE PART OF THE DISCUSSION FEDERAL FISHERY OVERSEERS WILL HAVE WITH ANGLERS THIS WEEK. JACOB MANDELLA CAUGHT THIS ONE NEAR REITER PONDS, THE SMOLT RELEASE SITE, DURING MOISTER TIMES A COUPLE WINTERS AGO. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

“At this time, NOAA Fisheries is seeking input on the scope of the analysis, including the range of reasonable alternatives, recommendations for methods of analysis and information on the impacts of the alternatives,” the National Marine Fisheries Service said in a press release earlier this month.

If NMFS doesn’t have high-quality, defensible approvals for those systems in place by next spring, it becomes even more challenging for WDFW to continue hatchery steelhead production on the five rivers, four of which haven’t seen smolt releases since 2013 due to a lawsuit settlement with the Wild Fish Conservancy.

A flood of comments earlier this year led the feds to step back from conditionally approving releases on the Nooksack, Stilly and Dungeness this spring.

Both workshops begin at 6 p.m. Coordinates for the shindigs are:

Skagit Public Utility District
Aqua Room
1415 Freeway Drive
Mt. Vernon, WA

Lynnwood Convention Center
Room 2BC
3711 196th St., S.W.
Lynnwood, WA

Comments can be left at the workshops; emailed to EWShatcheriesEIS.wcr@noaa.gov; faxed to (360) 753-9517; or mailed to NMFS Sustainable Fisheries Division, 510  Desmond Dr. S.E., Suite 103, Lacey, WA, 98503.

 

TWO STURGEON FOUND DEAD IN THE JOHN DAY POOL EARLIER THIS WEEK. (MIKE WALL, WDFW)

All Sturgeon Angling Closing On The Columbia Above Bonneville

UPDATED 3:55 P.M., JULY 16, 2015

It’s unclear what’s killing large sturgeon in the hot, low waters of the Columbia, but Washington and Oregon fishery managers this afternoon decided to close all fishing for the long-lived species from Bonneville east to the state line to protect the broodstock.

The rule change, which goes into effect this Saturday, July 18, includes catch-and-release fishing.

“We don’t believe it’s the recreational fishery that’s doing this,” stressed Ron Roler, WDFW’s Columbia River manager, after the decision was made. “We’re not saying anybody did this; we’re reducing stress.”

His agency is also closing the middle and upper Columbia and the Snake to all sturgeon angling, and ODFW announced the Willamette River below Willamette Falls, Gilbert River and Multnomah Channel would also close for the species starting July 18.

“I’m in complete agreement although it cuts my throat financially,’’ The Dalles-based guide Jack LaFond told Allen Thomas of The Columbian. “ I love these big fish and I don’t want to see them die or harmed in any way.’’

Reports of dead fish in the Columbia have been filtering in for the past week or so, but “the frequency and magnitude of the reported mortalities have increased sharply in recent days,” according to a fact sheet put out today ahead of this afternoon’s decision.

ODFW and WDFW staffers have counted 80 from the Gorge reservoirs to the Hanford Reach, with most in the John Day Pool, the fact sheet states.

“It’s mainly affecting the oversize adults,” says Roler.

IVAN REYES POSES WITH A LARGE DEAD STURGEON FOUND TUESDAY EVENING NEAR TRI-CITIES. (GERARDO REYES)

IVAN REYES POSES WITH A LARGE DEAD STURGEON FOUND TUESDAY EVENING NEAR TRI-CITIES. (GERARDO REYES)

Just as with smaller rivers in the region, the Columbia is running low and hot this year.

Biologists report that not only are flows at Bonneville less than half of the five-year average (137,000 cubic feet per second vs. 287,000 cfs), but water temperatures have been around 73 through the first half of the month, 8 degrees higher for the same period over the past half decade. They’ve also been elevated all year long.

Yesterday, initial speculation on the deaths focused on sockeye. Some of the sturgeon were reported to have been stuffed with the salmon, which are also more sensitive to hot water than other species. Nearly four dozen Upper Columbia-bound sockeye were found dead in the Deschutes last week, the victims of a bacterial infection typically caused by hot water and low levels of oxygen.

Sturgeon may be long like barracudas, but they do their feeding on the river bottom, not chasing down 3- to 7-pound salmon. Currently, there’s a 200,000-sockeye gap between the counts at Bonneville and McNary Dams when it should be much, much narrower, meaning there are a lot of dead salmon for oversize fish to feed on.

“Some of our science guys have concluded that the missing sockeye aren’t going to reappear,” Roler noted.

TWO STURGEON FOUND DEAD IN THE JOHN DAY POOL EARLIER THIS WEEK. (MIKE WALL, WDFW)

TWO OF THE 60 STURGEON (ABOVE, BELOW) FOUND DEAD IN THE JOHN DAY POOL EARLIER THIS WEEK. (MIKE WALL, WDFW)

2015-07-13 12.13.01-min

While why the sturgeon are dying may be hard to determine because of rapid decomposition – a die-off in the Fraser two years ago is reportedly still unsolved — for the moment biologists do have one theory:

“Elevated water temperatures and potentially low dissolved oxygen levels in the water may be significant factors contributing  to the mortalities,” they write in the fact sheet.

Roler speculates that when the gorged sturgeon digest the salmon, it changes their metabolism and makes them more vulnerable to those water conditions.

“There’s really nothing we can do about this except try to reduce stress,” he said.

He says that fish scientists tell managers that sturgeon picking up culminaris from sockeye isn’t likely.

As it stands, it’s all just one more signal that conditions in the Columbia and elsewhere in the Northwest have gone seriously haywire this year.

As the sturgeon are dying, summer Chinook have unexpectedly surged over Bonneville this week, creating new back-to-back record daily counts that each nearly equal the best days of the run three weeks ago, the traditional peak.

It’s a likely sign that the salmon are using a temporary cooling of the river to make a dash out of downstream thermal refuges to more upstream ones.

Even as Wild Fish Conservancy and others got a lot of media play earlier this week demanding the states close fishing in streams with waters 64.4 degrees or hotter, the agencies have been carefully watching conditions since well before then.

Earlier today, ODFW announced hoot-owl fishing restrictions to most streams in the state, and WDFW is poised to make an announcement too.

“The drought is causing real problems for fish throughout the state,” said fish program manager Craig Burley. “We expect to announce further restrictions on state fisheries within the next few days.”

 

JOHN KEIZER OF SALT PATROL HEFTS ONE OF THE CHINOOK HIS BOAT HOOKED LAST WEEKEND OUT OF WESTPORT. (SALT PATROL)

WA Ocean Salmon Fishing Report (7-16-15)

BY WENDY BEEGHLEY, WDFW

Columbia Ocean Area (including Oregon)

Ocean catches for the Columbia River area are unavailable for the week of July 6.  Catch will be updated next week.

Westport

A total of 4,964 anglers participated in the all-species salmon fishery the week of July 6, landing 2,700 Chinook, 2,189 coho, and 965 pink.  Through Sunday, July 12, a total of 7,128 Chinook (26% of the area guideline) and 7,522 coho (14% of the area sub-quota) have been landed.

La Push

A total of 307 anglers participated in the all-species salmon fishery the week of July 6, landing 386 Chinook, 66 coho, and 31 pink.  Through Sunday, July 12, a total of 713 Chinook (27% of the area guideline) and 126 coho (4% of the area sub-quota) have been landed.

Neah Bay

A total of 1,842 anglers participated in the all-species salmon fishery the week of July 6, landing 1,453 Chinook, 462 coho, and 1,428 pink.  Through Sunday, July 12, a total of 3,956 Chinook (47% of the area guideline) and 462 coho (6% of the area sub-quota) have been landed.

BY JOHN KEIZER, SALT PATROL

Westport was a rough a rainy  place this past weekend but the good news was the kings were biting. Action on chinook to 25lbs was straight out from the harbor mouth to slightly NW in 280-300ft of water.  That’s about 20 miles. Saturday we caught and released 12 chinook and kept a coho.

JOHN KEIZER OF SALT PATROL HEFTS ONE OF THE CHINOOK HIS BOAT HOOKED LAST WEEKEND OUT OF WESTPORT. (SALT PATROL)

JOHN KEIZER OF SALT PATROL HEFTS ONE OF THE CHINOOK HIS BOAT HOOKED LAST WEEKEND OUT OF WESTPORT. (SALT PATROL)

 

Coho fishing was a little sporadic in the deep water if you ran into a school you did well.  The kings were deep, we were fishing 230 ft on the Scotty Downriggers, you would see bait of fish on the Lowrance Sonar unit then adjust your rigger accordingly.

 

Top producer was again a Pro-Troll Hot Chip flasher with 40inches of 50lb Seaguar Fluorocarbon  leader to a Silver Horde Kingfisher Lite  Spoon.  The spoon is coated liberally with Pro-Cure Bloody Tuna Jell scent.

 

USGS RIVER TEMPS FOR CASCADE ISLAND, AT BONNEVILLE DAM, OVER THE PAST WEEK. (USGS)

King Count Jumps Unexpectedly At Bonneville

The nearly 4,000 Chinook counted at Bonneville Dam yesterday was a record for July 14 back to 1939 and smashed the old high mark for the day by over 2,500 fish, according to a fishery monitor.

The daily count had otherwise been tailing off from its peak in late June, but Tuesday saw it hit 3,994. Over the past 10 years, the average for the day is just 851 summer kings.

“High water temps likely delayed the run but the weather change/light rain/degree drop in river temp probably got them going,” explained Columbia River factoid monger Joe Hymer at WDFW’s Vancouver office.

USGS RIVER TEMPS FOR CASCADE ISLAND, AT BONNEVILLE DAM, OVER THE PAST WEEK. (USGS)

USGS RIVER TEMPS FOR CASCADE ISLAND, AT BONNEVILLE DAM, OVER THE PAST WEEK. (USGS)

He says coming days could also see new records as the salmon use the temporary break to make a dash upstream from thermal refuges at the mouths of the Cowlitz and Lewis Rivers and, apparently, the ocean.

Hymer says that coded-wire tags recently taken from the snouts of 15 Chinook caught above the Astoria-Megler Bridge show that the fish were “largely upper Columbia summer Chinook with a Willamette spring and a Snake River spring/summer Chinook in the mix.”

Columbia River managers estimate the summer Chinook run will come in at 108,000; since June 16, which marks the start of the states’ summer counting period at Bonneville, 89,361 have been tallied. Aug. 1 is considered the start of the fall run.

THE SNOQUALMIE, WHERE DAMIEN MCBRIDE HOOKED THIS WINTER-RUN ON A JIG, IS AMONG THE SYSTEMS THAT FEDERAL FISHERY OVERSEERS PLAN TO LOOK AT. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

NMFS Seeks Input On Sound Steelhead Hatchery Ops

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE

NOAA Fisheries has scheduled two public workshops next week to discuss development of an upcoming draft environmental impact statement that will examine five early winter steelhead hatchery programs in Puget Sound. The draft EIS will analyze the effects of five proposed Hatchery and Genetic Management Plans that guide early winter steelhead hatchery programs in the Dungeness, Nooksack, Stillaguamish, Skykomish and Snoqualmie watersheds.

The dates, times and locations of the workshops are:

Monday, July 20, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Skagit Public Utility District
Aqua Room
1415 Freeway Drive
Mt. Vernon, WA

Tuesday, July 21, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Lynnwood Convention Center
Room 2BC
3711 196th St., S.W.
Lynnwood, WA

At the workshops NOAA Fisheries representatives will describe the proposed steelhead programs, explain the EIS process and answer questions. NOAA Fisheries announced its intention to prepare a draft EIS in a Federal Register notice July 14. The draft EIS extends the analysis of three early winter steelhead hatchery program that were evaluated in an earlier draft environmental assessment.

THE SNOQUALMIE, WHERE DAMIEN MCBRIDE HOOKED THIS WINTER-RUN ON A JIG, IS AMONG THE SYSTEMS THAT FEDERAL FISHERY OVERSEERS PLAN TO LOOK AT. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

THE SNOQUALMIE, WHERE DAMIEN MCBRIDE HOOKED THIS WINTER-RUN ON A JIG A COUPLE SEASONS BACK, IS AMONG THE SYSTEMS THAT FEDERAL FISHERY OVERSEERS WILL PREPARE A DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT FOR HATCHERY OPERATIONS. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

At this time, NOAA Fisheries is seeking input on the scope of the analysis, including the range of reasonable alternatives, recommendations for methods of analysis and information on the impacts of the alternatives. Those attending the workshops may submit comments on the proposed scope of the draft EIS by leaving them at the workshops, submitting them by email to EWShatcheriesEIS.wcr@noaa.gov; faxing them to 360-753-9517; or mailing or hand-delivering them to NMFS Sustainable Fisheries Division, 510  Desmond Dr. S.E., Suite 103, Lacey, WA, 98503.

For further information on the project, the Hatchery and Genetic Management Plans for the steelhead hatchery programs under review, and to see documents produced so far, go to: http://www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov/hatcheries/salmon_and_steelhead_hatcheries.html