Category Archives: Headlines

A RECORD NUMBER OF STELLER SEA LIONS WERE OBSERVED AT BONNEVILLE EARLIER THIS SPRING. THESE WERE PHOTOGRAPHED AT THE DAM A COUPLE FALLS AGO. (CORPS OF ENGINEERS)

High Salmonid Predation, Record Numbers Of Pinnipeds At Bonneville

Recent weeks have seen record numbers of sea lions at Bonneville, and salmonid predation at the Columbia River dam has also been twice as high as the average of the previous 13 years.

According to data from the Army Corps of Engineers, an estimated 5,878 spring Chinook and steelhead have been chowed down there by pinnipeds through May 6.

That’s more than twice the 2002-14 average of 2,766 for the same time frame.

The news was first reported by Columbia Basin Bulletin.

The Corps also says there were record one-day counts of 62 California sea lions on April 29 and 69 Steller sea lions on April 22, and the new daily record for all pinnipeds — 116, set April 22 — shatters the old high mark of 71 set in 2010.

A RECORD NUMBER OF STELLER SEA LIONS WERE OBSERVED AT BONNEVILLE EARLIER THIS SPRING. THESE WERE PHOTOGRAPHED AT THE DAM A COUPLE FALLS AGO. (CORPS OF ENGINEERS)

A RECORD NUMBER OF STELLER SEA LIONS WERE OBSERVED AT BONNEVILLE EARLIER THIS SPRING. THESE WERE PHOTOGRAPHED AT THE DAM A COUPLE FALLS AGO. (CORPS OF ENGINEERS)

The average daily count is 35, nearly 20 more than last year and 11 higher than the previous high of 24 in 2010.

On the flip side, sturgeon predation has been very low, just an estimated 34 versus the 2006-14 average for the same time of 1,284.

A total of 14 California sea lions have been trapped and euthanized, while two others and a Steller have accidentally died in trap malfunctions at the dam.

This year’s spring Chinook count stands just below 182,000, with a quarter million now expected back to the mouth.

It’s unclear how many may have been intercepted on their way to the dam; a federal estimate last year suggested as much as 40 percent of the run might have been overhauled by pinnipeds.

Earlier this year, record numbers of California sea lions and harbor seals gathered at the mouth of the Columbia as a decent smelt run made its way towards the Cowlitz and other rivers.

In January, a pair of Lower Columbia Congressmen, Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, a Southwest Washington Republican, and Rep. Kurt Schrader, a Northwest Oregon Democrat, teamed up to introduce the Endangered Salmon and Fisheries Predation Prevention Act, which aims to “improve the survival of endangered salmon, steelhead and other native fish species in the Columbia River system.”

According to a press release from Herrera Beutler, it would authorize tribal members — under the training of U.S. Fish and Wildlife staff — to use lethal force to remove sea lions after multiple attempts at relocation have been unsuccessful.

The states of Oregon and Washington already have that authority.

The bill has been referred to committee.

HEDGE JARVIS HAS TAUGHT HUNTER ED TO MORE THAN 1,600 PROSPECTIVE SPORTSMEN, AND IN SOME CASES HAS HAD MULTIPLE GENERATIONS COME THROUGH HIS CLASS. (BOB SWINGLE, ODFW)

Winchester Man First Oregonian Inducted Into International Hunter Ed Hall Of Fame

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

Hedge Jarvis of Winchester, Ore. will be the state’s first hunter education instructor to be inducted into the International Hunter Education-USA Volunteer Hall of Fame during a ceremony onMay 21 in Des Moines, Iowa.

Jarvis, 77, has been teaching hunter education in Oregon for more than 32 years and has certified more than 1,665 students.

HEDGE JARVIS HAS TAUGHT HUNTER ED TO MORE THAN 1,600 PROSPECTIVE SPORTSMEN, AND IN SOME CASES HAS HAD MULTIPLE GENERATIONS COME THROUGH HIS CLASS. (BOB SWINGLE, ODFW)

HEDGE JARVIS HAS TAUGHT HUNTER ED TO MORE THAN 1,600 PROSPECTIVE SPORTSMEN, AND IN SOME CASES HAS HAD MULTIPLE GENERATIONS COME THROUGH HIS CLASS. (BOB SWINGLE, ODFW)

Jarvis is so well-liked that he often finds himself teaching the children and even grandchildren of former students. “I have parents and in one case even a grandparent tell me that I was their instructor, and that’s why they are bringing their kids back—they want their kids to take my class,” says Jarvis. “That continues to motivate me to teach.”

Jarvis has also had a huge impact on Oregon’s overall program by patiently serving on work groups to overhaul the student manual, student test, and policies and procedures.

“Hedge has been instrumental in developing Oregon’s independent study field day lesson plans and course design,” said James Reed, ODFW hunter education coordinator. “He was one of the first instructors to see the value in online classes and the need to have a quality accompanying field day.”

JARVIS TEACHES YOUNG HUNTERS. (COURTESY JARVIS FAMILY, VIA ODFW)

JARVIS TEACHES YOUNG HUNTERS. (COURTESY JARVIS FAMILY, VIA ODFW)

Indeed, Jarvis is comfortable with kids using technology in his classroom, noting that many use their cell phones to follow the online class during his traditional class. “We get youngsters who take the regular class and who are also online with online course to be ahead of the curriculum,” he said.

According to IHEA-USA, 12 other hunter education instructors nationwide have received this Volunteer Hall of Fame honor for their service to hunter education over the course of their lives. “This award recognizes those that generally put in 20-plus years in a manner that goes above and beyond the normal effort,” says IHEA-USA Executive Director Steve Hall. “They get involved nationally, too.”

In an effort to recognize many longtime hunter education instructors, ODFW created its own Oregon Hall of Fame this year. Last month, the department inducted 92 instructors with more than 20 years of volunteer service during a ceremony at the Oregon Hunter Education Conference in Pendleton (see names below).

In Oregon, hunter education is required for any hunter under age 18 and recommended for everyone. Other states require it for every hunter, regardless of age. Hunting incidents have fallen drastically since hunter education became mandatory in 1958.

Oregon has over 500 volunteer hunter education instructors who certify about 5,000 hunters each year. Nationally, approximately 52,700 volunteer hunter education instructors certify 694,346 students each year according to IHEA-USA.

Oregon 2015 Volunteer Hunter Education Instruction Hall of Fame  
Recognizing instructors who have volunteered for more than 20 years.

Baker County 
Bill Taylor (33 years)

Clackamas County
Dennis Berreth (38 years)
David Braman (23 years)
James Burdett (34 years)
Anthony Burtt (27 years)
Jeff Hepler (22 years)
Clyde Shaver (25 years)
Glen Watson (23 years)

Clatsop County
Walt Pohlenz (28 years)

Columbia County
Arnold Cork (28 years)
Rob Prince (33 years)
Gerald Simmons (28 years)
Bill Womack (42 years)

Coos County
Gerald Forty (22 years)
Marcey Fullerton (23 years)

Crook County
Stewart Butts (24 years)
Carter Fall (23 years)

Curry County
Teresa Cotton (20 years)

Deschutes County
Brian Ferry (22 years)
Larry Garibay (33 years)
Dayton Hyde (23 years)
David Jarschke (20 years)
Fred Kowoloski (23 years)
Bill Layton (21 years)
Stephen Payer (23 years)
Charles Putman (27 years)
Dan Ramming (22 years)

Douglas County
Eugene Bliven (31 years)
Duke Hayes (23 years)
Hedge Jarvis (31 years)
Ralph Klein (20 years)
Don Wilson (25 years)

Grant County
Neil Bauer (41 years)
Lynn Comini (23 years)
Walter Day (22 years)
Christopher Labhart (22 years)
Ken Larssen (21 years)
Joe Wallace (21 years)

Harney County
Chuck Boatman (21 years)
David Ganskopp (24 years)

Jackson County
Diana Bauman (25 years)
Homer Haynes (23 years)
Darrell Long (22 years)
Duane Mackey (39 years)
Rick Mackey (23 years)
Tom Maddox (20 years)
Don Pritchett (27 years)

Jefferson County
Tim McCormick (22 years)

Lake County
Craig Foster (28 years)
Marty St. Louis (25 years)

Lane County
Ted Bork (25 years)
Nick Castillo (25 years)
Bill Harris (30 years)
Lois McGlothin (34 years)
Carl McGlothin (34 years)
Rich Morgan (35 years)
Warren Weathers (26 years)
George Westfall (26 years)

Lincoln County
John Baird (22 years)
Paul Blasko (35 years)
Don Peters (26 years)
Bill Winheim (20 years)

Linn County
David Stumpff (40 years)

Malheur County
Lanny Fujishin (32 years)
Don Hodge (34 years)

Marion County    
Carl Barner (25 years)

Morrow County
Greg Barron (25 years)
Roger Trueax (32 years)

Multnomah County
Carl Haggland (24 years)

Sherman County
Dean Brege (38 years)
Keith Morris (25 years)

Umatilla County   
William Burwell (37 years)
Phillip Jarmer (22 years)
Andy Millar (32 years)

Union County
David Bronson (31 years)

Wasco County
Hewitt Hillis (25 years)
Tim Sipe (20 years)
Zach Worth (27 years)

Washington County
Warren Aney (55 years)
John Cundiff (24 years)
Robert Remillard (21 years)
Charlie Rutkowski (21 years)
Richard Thompson (21 years)
Thomas Widman (20 years)

Wheeler County
Patrick Perry (37 years)
Roy Peterson (24 years)

Yamhill County
Lloyd Abbott (38 years)
Roy Harrell (22 years)
Charles Lamson (34 years)
Wayne Stocks (26 years)
Tom Tankersley (24 years)
Bruce Waltz (23 years)

A PACIFICORP WEBCAM SHOWS PART OF THE STRETCH OF THE NOW-FREE FLOWING WHITE SALMON RIVER THAT HAS BEEN OPENED FOR HARVEST OF SPRING CHINOOK. CONDIT DAM, JUST ABOVE HERE, WAS REMOVED IN 2011. (PACIFICORP)

Part Of Former Northwestern Res. On White Salmon R. Opened To Fishing For Stray Hatchery Springers

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

Area expanded for fishing for hatchery spring chinook on the White Salmon River

Action: White Salmon River anglers will be allowed to fish for hatchery spring chinook from the county bridge below the former power house upstream to the Northwestern Road Bridge beginning May 23.

Species affected: Chinook

Effective Dates:  May 23 through July 31, 2015

Location:

(Big) White Salmon River (Skamania/Klickitat Co.) from the county road bridge located below the former power house upstream to the Northwestern Road Bridge.

Daily limits: Through June 30, the daily limit is two hatchery chinook or hatchery steelhead or one of each. Effective July 1, the hatchery salmon/steelhead daily limit will be 3 fish of which no more than 2 may be hatchery spring Chinook. Salmon minimum size is 12 inches. Wild chinook and wild steelhead must be released. Release all gamefish except hatchery steelhead.

A PACIFICORP WEBCAM SHOWS PART OF THE STRETCH OF THE NOW-FREE FLOWING WHITE SALMON RIVER THAT HAS BEEN OPENED FOR HARVEST OF SPRING CHINOOK. CONDIT DAM, JUST ABOVE HERE, WAS REMOVED IN 2011. (PACIFICORP)

A PACIFICORP WEBCAM SHOWS PART OF THE STRETCH OF THE NOW-FREE FLOWING WHITE SALMON RIVER THAT HAS BEEN OPENED FOR HARVEST OF SPRING CHINOOK. CONDIT DAM, JUST ABOVE HERE, WAS REMOVED IN 2011. (PACIFICORP)

Other information:  Selective gear rules will be in effect. A Columbia River Salmon and Steelhead Endorsement is required.

Reason for action: This will implement new permanent rules recently adopted during the gamefish and North of Falcon salmon regulation processes. Spring Chinook strays have been found in the system. This regulation opens an additional 3 miles of river to fishing for salmon.

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Crater Lake-area Trout Streamwork Wins National Accolades

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

A 25-year-long effort to restore bull and redband trout populations in Sun Creek, on the flanks of Crater Lake National Park, has been named one of the ten 2015 Waters to Watch by the National Fish Habitat Partnership.

The annual list highlights a collection of rivers, streams and shores where habitat and fish populations have been restored through the combined efforts of community groups, non-profit organizations, local watershed groups, Native American tribes and state and federal agencies.

Sun Creek originates on the southern slopes of Crater Lake National Park in southwest Oregon, and was historically a tributary of Wood River. According to Bill Tinniswood, ODFW fish biologist, while the creek once boasted healthy populations of both redband and bull trout, both populations suffered over the years due to poor connectivity to Wood River, habitat degradation and hybridization with non-native brook and brown trout.

A SCREEN SHOT OF A NATIONAL PARK SERVICE MAP SHOWS THE ORIGINS OF SUN CREEK, ON THE SOUTH RIM OF CRATER LAKE. (NPS)

A SCREEN SHOT OF A NATIONAL PARK SERVICE MAP SHOWS THE ORIGINS OF SUN CREEK, ON THE SOUTH RIM OF CRATER LAKE. (NPS)

The redband trout population was extirpated in the 1940s. A population of native bull trout persisted in the upstream portion of Sun Creek along with non-native brook trout. For the last 25 years, biologists with Crater Lake National Park, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and others have been removing brook trout and, as a result, the bull trout population has increased 10 to 20 fold.

THIS ODFW IMAGE SHOWS THE CURRENT LOCATION WHERE SUN CREEK IS DIVERTED, ABOVE THE PROJECT REACH. (ODFW0

THIS ODFW IMAGE SHOWS THE CURRENT LOCATION WHERE SUN CREEK IS DIVERTED, ABOVE THE PROJECT REACH. (ODFW0

“The response of the bull trout population has been phenomenal,” Tinniswood said. “The population went from approximately 150 fish in 1989 to current estimates of 2,500 to 3,000 fish.”

However, because of the poor habitat quality and lack of connectivity in lower Sun Creek, the bull trout population cannot expand its range downstream, said Nell Kolden, restoration director for the Klamath Basin Rangeland Trust.

“Removing the brook trout in the upper creek allowed the bull trout populations there to flourish,” Kolden said. “Our next step is to create a migratory corridor that will connect this isolated population to the Wood River and also allow redband trout access to Sun Creek.”

The expanded habitat available to Wood River redband trout would allow them to move upstream into Sun Creek for the first time in over 60 years.

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THIS IMAGE SHOWS THE FUTURE LOCATION OF THE CONFLUENCE OF SUN CREEK AND THE WOOD RIVER, NORTH OF KLAMATH FALLS. (ODFW)

To accomplish this, a diverse mix of conservation groups in the Upper Klamath Basin will partner to reconstruct a natural stream channel through private property, creating high quality habitat and increasing instream flows, Kolden said.

“It is extremely gratifying to see this exciting project realized,” said Mark Buktenica, aquatic ecologist for the National Park Service, who first discovered the remnant population of 150 bull trout in Crater Lake National Park in 1989. “It is the final crescendo of a 25-year effort by project partners to recover this imperiled population.”

These partners include private landowners, and an extensive list of groups and agencies including the Western Native Trout Initiative, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Oregon Department of Forestry, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, The Klamath Tribes, Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Forest Service, Oregon Water Resources Department, and Klamath Basin Rangeland Trust.

For more information about the Waters to Watch program and the National Fish Habitat Partnership, and to see the complete 2015 “Waters to Watch” list, visit www.fishhabitat.org/waters-to-watch.

Most Of Area 2 Closing For Halibut

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

Halibut fishing to close in most of Marine Area 2

Action: Close the recreational halibut fishery in Marine Area 2 (Westport-Ocean Shores), except that halibut fishing is allowed in the northern nearshore area from the Queets River (47º31.70’N. latitude) south to 46º58.00’N. latitude and east of a line approximating the 30 fathom depth contour as defined by the following coordinates until further notice.

47 º 31.70 N. lat, 124 º 37.03 W. long
47 º 25.67 N. lat, 124 º 34.79 W. long
47 º 12.82 N. lat, 124 º 29.12 W. long
46 º 58.00 N. lat, 124 º 24.24 W. long

Effective date: May 13, 2015

Species affected: Pacific halibut

Location:  Marine Area 2

Reason for action: The Marine Area 2 recreational Pacific halibut quota set aside for the primary season was projected to have been taken at the end of the day Tuesday, May 12, 2015.  Any quota remaining from the primary season will be added to a separate quota set aside for incidental halibut retention in the northern nearshore area and is sufficient to continue to allow halibut fishing seven days per week in that area. This rule conforms to federal action taken by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC).

Grizzly Bear Wandering Lowlands Of NE WA Valley

Wildlife managers are keeping tabs on a grizzly that’s wandering in Pend Oreille County’s lowlands and so far isn’t causing any problems.

Observed in recent weeks near roads and farms, the large bear has been providing something of a Yellowstone-like viewing experience for locals, but if its behavior changes, WDFW spokeswoman Madonna Luers says that biologists will try to capture and move it to more remote parts of  Northeast Washington.

“We’re keeping an eye on it because it’s in a part of the county where there are more people,” she says.

Almost annually a grizzly makes its way through this country before eventually disappearing. This one apparently sniffed around a chicken coop on the Kalispel Tribe’s reservation along the Pend Oreille River, but an incident involving beehives was blamed on a black bear.

A picture of the grizzly made the front page of the Newport Miner last week; another online shows a bear just off the fogline of a paved road.

State, tribal and federal biologists have all been discussing the bear and its activities. An attempt to trap it earlier this month failed.

For more on bears, see WDFW’s webpage on the species.

WA Razor Clam Digs Now Closed For Season

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

Digging will remain closed on ocean beaches for the remainder of the razor clam season because of elevated toxin levels, state shellfish managers announced today.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has canceled two openings that were tentatively scheduled to start May 15 and May 22 due to high levels of domoic acid. WDFW canceled three days of a four-day dig earlier this month due to elevated toxin levels.

Domoic acid, a natural toxin produced by certain types of marine algae, can be harmful or even fatal if consumed in sufficient quantities. Razor clams absorb domoic acid into their fat cells and can retain it there long after the ocean water is free of toxins, said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for WDFW.

“Based on the most recent test results that show increased levels of domoic acid, razor clams will not be safe to eat for the remainder of this month,” Ayres said.

More information about domoic acid can be found on WDFW’s webpage at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/razorclams/domoic_acid.html .

“We’re disappointed to close early, but it has been a remarkable season for razor clam digging in Washington,” Ayres said. “We’ve had healthy and abundant clam populations that have drawn thousands of visitors to our ocean beaches.”

Shellfish managers estimate diggers harvested 5.7 million clams since the season began last October. Diggers had more opportunities to hit the beaches than any season since 1989, Ayres said.

Annual razor clam seasons typically end in mid-to-late May, when the clams begin to spawn and are less desirable for eating, Ayres said. This razor clam season was scheduled to end after the May 22 dig.

WDFW will continue to monitor toxin levels and conduct razor clam stock assessments as usual this summer.

“We hope toxin levels will drop and razor clam digging can begin again this fall,” Ayres said.

Since 1991, when the toxin was first detected on the Pacific coast, outbreaks of domoic acid have prompted the cancellation of three entire razor clam seasons in Washington – the last one in 2002-03. Kalaloch Beach, jointly managed by WDFW and Olympic National Park, also was closed for much of the 2004 season due to high toxin levels. In 2005, WDFW closed Long Beach for two days due to elevated toxin levels.

More information about Washington’s razor clam seasons can be found on WDFW’s webpage at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/razorclams/

Lower Columbia, Gorge Fishing Report (5-13-15)

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ORIGINATED WITH JIMMY WATTS AND TANNA TAKATA, ODFW, AND WAS TRANSMITTED BY JOE HYMER, PSMFC

Lower Columbia mainstem sport Spring Chinook effort and catch update – May 9

FYI – On Saturday May 9, anglers on the lower Columbia made 4,028 trips and caught 584 adult Chinook (437 kept and 147 released) and 7 summer steelhead (kept).  Based on VSI sampling, upriver spring Chinook comprised 81% of the kept catch.

Through May 9, there have been 112,462 angler trips with 15,710 Chinook kept and 2,776 released.  12,164 (77%) of the Chinook kept were upriver origin based upon Visual Stock Identification (VSI).

Salmon, Steelhead and Shad

Salmonid angling was fair to good during the one day weekend extension in the lower Columbia.  In the gorge, boat anglers averaged 0.64 spring Chinook caught per boat, while anglers fishing in Troutdale averaged 0.27 spring Chinook caught per boat.  In the Portland to Westport area, boat anglers averaged 0.40 spring Chinook caught per boat.  On Saturday’s (5/9) flight, 1,088 salmonid boats and 367 Oregon bank anglers were counted from the Columbia River Estuary to Bonneville Dam.

Bonneville Pool (Columbia River between Bonneville Dam and The Dalles Dam): Weekly checking showed no catch for 12 bank anglers.

The Dalles Pool (Columbia River between The Dalles Dam and John Day Dam): Weekly checking showed four adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook kept, plus three unclipped spring Chinook released for 90 bank anglers; and three adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook kept, plus three unclipped spring Chinook released for 32 boats (65 anglers).

John Day Pool (Columbia River above John Day Dam and John Day Arm): Weekly checking showed eight adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook kept, plus three unclipped spring Chinook released for 51 bank anglers; and nine adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook kept, plus seven unclipped spring Chinook released for 58 boats (141 anglers).

Gorge Bank: No report.

Gorge Boats (Below Beacon Rock): Weekend checking showed eight adipose fin-clipped adult spring Chinook and four adipose fin-clipped jack spring Chinook kept, plus eight unclipped adult spring Chinook released for 25 boats (80 anglers).

Troutdale Boats: Weekend checking showed 10 adipose fin-clipped adult spring Chinook and five adipose fin-clipped jack spring Chinook kept, plus nine unclipped adult spring Chinook released for 71 boats (156 anglers).

Westport Bank: Weekend checking showed no catch for 18 bank anglers.

Portland to Westport Boats: Weekend checking showed 39 adipose fin-clipped adult spring Chinook and nine adipose fin-clipped jack spring Chinook kept, plus nine unclipped adult spring Chinook and one unclipped jack spring Chinook released for 119 boats (310 anglers).

Estuary Bank (Clatsop Spit to Wauna Powerlines): No report.

Estuary Boats (Tongue Point to Wauna Powerlines): No report.

STURGEON

Lower Columbia (below Bonneville Dam): Closed to retention, catch-and-release only. No report.

Bonneville Pool (Columbia River between Bonneville Dam and The Dalles Dam): Closed to retention, catch-and-release only.  No report.

The Dalles Pool (Columbia River between The Dalles Dam and John Day Dam): Weekly checking showed two legal white sturgeon kept, plus one sublegal sturgeon released for 11 bank anglers; and two legal white sturgeon kept, plus one legal, four oversize and 30 sublegal sturgeon released for four boats (13 anglers).

John Day Pool (Columbia River between John Day Dam and McNary Dam): Weekly checking showed one oversize and five sublegal sturgeon released for five bank anglers; and four legal white sturgeon kept, plus one legal, two oversize and 18 sublegal sturgeon released for five boats (11 anglers).

WALLEYE

Bonneville Pool: No report.

The Dalles Pool: Weekly checking showed 24 walleye kept, plus four walleye released for five boats (11 anglers).

John Day Pool (Columbia River between John Day Dam and McNary Dam): Weekly checking showed 195 walleye kept, plus 68 walleye released for 28 boats (57 anglers).

 

Part Of Lower Clearwater Closing After May 17 For Springers

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

A section of the lower Clearwater River will close to salmon fishing at the end of fishing hours (8:30 p.m.) on Sunday, May 17.

The Clearwater River will close to all Chinook salmon fishing from the Camas Prairie Railroad Bridge near Lewiston upstream to the Cherry Lane Bridge.

This closure is being implemented because the harvest quota for adult Chinook salmon has been met in this river section. Harvest quotas in different reaches within the Clearwater River drainage were developed using public input. Those quotas help ensure all communities throughout the watershed have opportunities to harvest salmon.

Chinook salmon seasons continue on the Clearwater River upstream from the Cherry Lane Bridge and the North Fork Clearwater; as well as the South Fork Clearwater, Middle Fork Clearwater, Lower Salmon River, the Little Salmon River, Lochsa River, and Snake River.

For more information on salmon seasons and fishing rules in Idaho, visit the Fish and Game website at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/fish/?getPage=140

 

rmef logo

$212,000 In Grants For WA Elk Projects, Research Coming From RMEF

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE ROCKY MOUNTAIN ELK FOUNDATION

From prescribed burning and noxious weed treatments to forest restoration, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation awarded grants that will fund 15 conservation projects benefitting 8,760 acres of vital elk habitat in Washington.

The grants total $212,692 and directly impact 8,760 acres across Asotin, Chelan, Columbia, Cowlitz, Garfield, Kittitas, Klickitat, Okanogan, Pend Oreille, Skamania, Stevens and Yakima Counties.

rmef logo

“These projects will help improve elk habitat in areas where encroaching weeds and forest overgrowth have a detrimental effect on wildlife,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “We are also providing funds for research regarding forage availability for elk and other wildlife near Mount St. Helens.”

Allen thanked RMEF volunteers for their hard work and dedication in raising funds for projects in Washington. He also thanked volunteers around the country for seeking to further RMEF’s mission of ensuring the future of elk and elk country.

Since 1985, RMEF and its partners have completed 551 conservation and hunting heritage outreach projects in Washington with a combined value of more than $112.3 million. These projects have protected or enhanced 453,854 acres of habitat and have opened or secured public access to 118,756 acres.

Here is a sampling of Washington’s 2015 projects, listed by county:

Garfield County—Burn 2,685 acres within the broader Asotin Creek Prescribed Fire Project area to restore native grasslands and improve wildlife forage. To ensure the establishment of native grasses, 435 acres will be aerially seeded after the burn on a landscape that is a summer, winter and calving area for elk as well as bighorn sheep range.

Skamania County—Provide funding for continuing research to address the interaction of forage availability and nutritional quality on the elk population within the Mt. St. Helens eruption blast zone on the Gifford Pinchot National Forest compared to state and federal land outside the zone. The results provide a foundation for evaluating forest management, predicting future habitat condition trends and a basis for elk population management in the area.

Yakima County—Seed 820 acres with grasses, forbes and sagebrush to restore habitat for elk and other wildlife within the Cottonwood 2 Wildfire area that burned nearly 9,000 acres of winter range in 2014 (also affects Kittitas County).

For a complete list of Washington’s projects, go here.

Partners for the Washington projects include the Colville, Gifford Pinchot and Umatilla National Forests, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, private landowners and various sportsmen, wildlife, civic, and government organizations.