Category Archives: Headlines

(JASON BAUER)

Superlong Razor Clam Dig Starts Feb. 4 At Long Beach

You’ve heard of one-, two-, three-, four-, five-, six- and seven-day razor clam digs, but how about a monthlong one?

That’s what Washington shellfish managers have just approved.

Digging at Long Beach will begin Feb. 4 and run through March 10.

Evergreen State razor clammers haven’t had that many days of back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to — well, you get the idea — opportunity in over 20 years.

“We had a two-month-long opener in 1993 after the first domoic acid outbreak finally ended,” says state clam man Dan Ayres. “I don’t think we’ve done that since then.”

That was the product of a toxic bloom that ran from November 1992 to midfall 1993, and saw beaches reopened in November and December, which according to Ayres was also the last time the beaches were open over Christmas.

Similarly, high toxin levels last fall kept diggers off Washington’s coastal beaches until late December.

(JASON BAUER)

(JASON BAUER)

Here’s the official word from WDFW’s press release:

Razor clam diggers can look forward to more than a month of razor clam digging opportunities at Long Beach on the Washington coast.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) approved the dig, which runs from Feb. 4 through March 10, at Long Beach after marine toxin tests showed the clams are safe to eat.

All other beaches remain closed to recreational razor clam digging.

The department approved this extended opening due to the abundance of clams available at Long Beach, said Dan Ayres, WDFW coastal shellfish manager.

“We had a late start to the digging season, so we still have plenty of clams to dig at Long Beach,” Ayres said.  “We’re thrilled to be able to announce this lengthy opening.” 

The dig at Long Beach is on evening tides. No digging will be allowed before noon any day. Diggers should check tide charts before heading out, since tides of one foot or above aren’t conducive to digging, Ayres said.

“For the best digging conditions, we advise people to plan their trips to the beach when the evening low tides are less than one foot,” Ayres said.

Ayres noted the best digging usually occurs one to two hours prior to low tide

The first week of the upcoming dig at Long Beach is scheduled on the following dates and low tides:

  • Feb. 4, Thursday, 3:41 p.m.; 0.8 feet, Long Beach,
  • Feb. 5, Friday, 4:28 p.m.; 0.2 feet, Long Beach
  • Feb. 6, Saturday, 5:11 p.m.; -0.3 feet, Long Beach
  • Feb. 7, Sunday, 5:52 p.m.; -0.7 feet, Long Beach
  • Feb. 8, Monday, 6:32 p.m.; -1.0 feet, Long Beach
  • Feb. 9, Tuesday, 7:12 p.m.; -0.9 feet, Long Beach
  • Feb. 10, Wednesday, 7:52 p.m.; -0.7 feet, Long Beach
  • For tidal information at Long Beach beginning Feb. 11, diggers should check the tide charts listed on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s webpage at http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/map/

Additionally, a list of tides will be posted on WDFW’s razor clam webpage http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/razorclams/ Diggers should also check the website for announcements about openings at other Washington beaches.

Although toxin tests at Copalis beach show clams are safe to eat, shellfish managers are limiting digging there to help ensure the beach will have openings throughout the spring.

“Copalis was the first beach to open this season and we’ve already harvested nearly 40 percent of our annual quota,” Ayres said.

Razor clam digging will remain closed on Washington’s other coastal beaches until domoic acid levels drop below the threshold of 20 parts per million set by state public health officials. The natural toxin produced by certain types of marine algae can be harmful or even fatal if consumed in sufficient quantities.

WDFW is continuing to monitor toxin levels on all Washington beaches and will open other areas as soon as clams are safe to eat. Toxin test results can be found on WDFW’s domoic acid webpage at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/razorclams/domoic_levels.html

Diggers should monitor WDFW’s main razor clam webpage for any potential changes to the Long Beach opening.

Under state law, diggers can take 15 razor clams per day and are required to keep the first 15 they dig. Each digger’s clams must be kept in a separate container.

All diggers age 15 or older must have an applicable 2015-16 fishing license to harvest razor clams on any beach. Licenses, ranging from a three-day razor clam license to an annual combination fishing license, are available on WDFW’s website at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov and from license vendors around the state.

 

DEVIN SCHILDT HARVESTED THIS SPRING BLACK BEAR ON A SPECIAL PERMIT HUNT NEAR MONROE IN 2013. (BROWNING PHOTO CONTEST)

Time To Apply For Washington Spring Bear Permits

Twice as many hunters will be able to chase black bears in Northeast Washington this spring.

WDFW is offering 390 permits for the Sherman, Kelly Hill, Douglas, Aladdin, 49 Degrees North and Huckleberry Game Management Units, up from 195 in spring 2015.

The application period is open from now through Feb. 29, the agency announced today.

By happenstance, a total of 509 permits are available this year in 509erland.

During the Fish & Wildlife Commission meeting last April when harvest levels were set, state bear manager Donny Martorello said that because of fairly consistent success rates over time — 17 percent — hunters could be expected to take about 100 bruins in Eastern Washington in 2016.

He said that though the recommendation in the northeast wasn’t based on helping out elk calf and deer fawn recruitment, it could provide that ancillary benefit, important for folks in one of the state’s best hunting regions.

In a March meeting before the citizen panel, he said it was to provide more spring opportunity, which locals had requested. Worried about spring bear predation on fawns in the Sherman GMU, BJ Thornily suggested a general hunt with a hotline to call in to prevent overharvest.

This spring there’s also new opportunity on the Westside — 40 permits for the Long Beach-Bear River area to try and reduce chronic conflicts due to some residents feeding the animals.

A total of 345 permits are being offered in Western Washington, but that’s down from 383 last spring because Weyerhaeuser requested that their lands in the Lincoln GMU be removed from the program.

Unlike the fall hunt when most bears are taken (93 to 99 percent of the annual statewide take), the primary job of spring black bear hunters is to help reduce conflict, and on the Westside that’s damage on tree farms. Because there’s not much food in the forest in April and May, some hungry ursines turn to chewing up the bark of young Doug firs.

DEVIN SCHILDT HARVESTED THIS SPRING BLACK BEAR ON A SPECIAL PERMIT HUNT NEAR MONROE IN 2013. (BROWNING PHOTO CONTEST)

DEVIN SCHILDT HARVESTED THIS SPRING BLACK BEAR ON A SPECIAL PERMIT HUNT NEAR MONROE IN 2013. (BROWNING PHOTO CONTEST)

Dates of the spring hunt varies — it opens April 1 in the northeast and April 15 elsewhere, and then runs through May 31 or mid-June.

Before you apply for the Westside hunts, be aware that some are largely on private timberlands and that they may have to purchase access passes. This is most true for the Kapowsin and Copalis permits.

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And Westsiders, before you apply for Northeast hunts, you might consider whether you’ll really be able to make the trek and put the permit to use.

For more on applying, WDFW spelled it out in a press release:

To apply for a permit, hunters must purchase a special permit application and a 2016 hunting license that includes bear as a species option. Hunting licenses, bear transport tags and bear permit applications may be purchased:

Special permit applications, which require a correct hunt choice number, may be submitted online at http://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/ or by calling (877) 945-3492.

A GUIDE BOAT HEADS OUT FROM THE RAMP AT THE FISHERY BELOW BEACON ROCK DURING THE 2014 SEASON. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

Columbia Springer, Cowlitz Smelt Seasons Set

Spring Chinook fishing on the Lower Columbia will be open through April 9, with boat angling allowed up to Beacon Rock, salmon managers decided today.

As always, both banks of the big river below Bonneville will be fair game for shore-bound plunkers, and the daily limit for everyone is one hatchery fin-clipped adult king.

A GUIDE BOAT HEADS OUT FROM THE RAMP AT THE FISHERY BELOW BEACON ROCK DURING THE 2014 SEASON. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

A GUIDE BOAT HEADS OUT FROM THE RAMP AT THE FISHERY BELOW BEACON ROCK DURING THE 2014 SEASON. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

Fishing will be closed March 29 and April 5 to accommodate potential commercial fisheries.

That means that until the run-size update later in April, anglers and guides will have 38 days to work the Lower Columbia.

Our initial allocation of upriver-bound springers is 7,515, and state managers model an overall harvest of 9,100, thanks to clipped kings that are also returning to Southwest Washington and Willamette tribs.

The forecast calls for 188,000 Upper Columbia and Snake springers, 10th best over the past 35 years, but the return to the system could approach 300,000, thanks to strong predictions for the Willamette and Cowlitz.

Above Bonneville to the Oregon-Washington line, springer season will run March 16-May 5, 52 days, with both sides of the Bonneville Pool open for bank angling and boat angling allowed from the Tower Island powerlines below The Dalles Dam upstream to above McNary Dam near Wallula.

Columbia managers also decided to close sturgeon retention in the Bonneville Pool effective Feb. 8 to preserve some harvestable fish for an opener in mid-June. Catch-and-release fishing can continue.

And Washington set a Saturday, Feb. 6, smelt dippery in the Cowlitz. The river will be open from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., with the usual 10-pound limit (about a quarter of a 5-gallon bucket) per person.

BILL LISTON SCOOPS SMELT DURING THE 2015 OPENER ON THE COWLITZ RIVER. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

BILL LISTON SCOOPS SMELT DURING THE 2015 OPENER ON THE COWLITZ RIVER. (DAIWA PHOTO CONTEST)

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

States set Columbia spring Chinook seasons

CLACKAMAS, Ore. – Fishery managers from Oregon and Washington set spring Chinook salmon seasons for the Columbia River today during a joint state hearing in Vancouver, Wash.

The recreational springer season on the Columbia from the river mouth upstream to Bonneville Dam will open from March 1 – April 9, with two days off during that period to allow for potential commercial fishing periods.

The Columbia River spring Chinook season is based on a forecast of 299,200 returning spring Chinook, which includes an expected 188,800 upriver spring Chinook. The prediction is down from last year’s banner return of 415,200 springers but above the 10-year average return of 285,000 fish.

Above Bonneville, the state fishery managers approved a Chinook retention season starting on Wednesday, March 16 and continuing through Friday, May 6, with an expected recreational harvest of 900 fish.

On the Willamette River, the spring Chinook forecast is 70,100 fish which is down from last year’s actual return of 87,100 springers but is better than the 10-year average of 61,000.

“We’re looking forward to another year of good spring Chinook fishing,” said Chris Kern, deputy administrator of ODFW’s Fish Division.

The states also announced the winter recreational sturgeon fishery in Bonneville Pool will close effective Monday, Feb. 8, which fishery managers believe will leave enough room under the harvest guideline to offer a short summer sturgeon retention season. In addition, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife announced a recreational smelt fishery for the Cowlitz River, scheduled for Feb. 6.

The following is a summary of spring recreational fishing seasons, including those adopted at today’s meeting.

CHINOOK SALMON

Columbia River mouth to Bonneville Dam

Prior to March 1, permanent rules for Chinook salmon, as outlined in the 2016 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, remain in effect.

From March 1 through April 9, boat fishing will be allowed seven days a week from Buoy 10 at the Columbia River mouth upstream to Beacon Rock, which is located approximately four miles below Bonneville Dam. Bank fishing will be allowed during the same timeframe from Buoy 10 upstream to the fishing deadline at Bonneville Dam. The recreational fishery will be closed on March 29 and April 5 (Tuesdays).  The recreational fishery below Bonneville will be managed prior to a run update based on the available guideline of 7,515 upriver spring Chinook. The season may be shortened or extended depending on catch and effort.

The daily bag limit will be two adipose fin-clipped adult salmon or steelhead in combination, of which no more than one may be a Chinook. The rules also allow retention of up to five adipose fin-clipped jack salmon per day in Oregon.

Columbia River from Bonneville Dam to the Oregon/Washington border

Prior to March 16, permanent rules for Chinook salmon, as outlined in the 2016 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, remain in effect.

Effective March 16 through May 6, this area will be open to retention of adipose fin-clipped Chinook. Fishing for salmon and steelhead from a boat between Bonneville Dam and the Tower Island power lines, approximately six miles downstream from The Dalles Dam, is prohibited.

This fishery will be managed to the available harvest guideline of 1,000 upriver spring Chinook and may be shortened or extended depending on catch and effort.

The daily bag limit will be two adipose fin-clipped adult salmon or steelhead in combination, of which no more than one may be a Chinook. The rules also allow retention of up to five adipose fin-clipped jack salmon per day in Oregon.

Select Areas

Permanent fishing regulations for recreational harvest in Oregon waters within Youngs Bay and Blind Slough/Knappa Slough are listed in the 2016 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.

Based on today’s action, effective March 1 through June 15, 2016 on days when the mainstem below Bonneville Dam is open to recreational Chinook harvest, the daily salmonid bag limit will be the same as mainstem Columbia bag limits. On days the mainstem Columbia is closed to Chinook retention, the permanent bag limits for Select Areas will apply.

Willamette River

Under permanent rules, the Willamette River remains open to retention of adipose fin-clipped adult Chinook salmon and adipose fin-clipped steelhead seven days a week.

The bag limit on the Willamette below Willamette Falls is two adipose fin-clipped adult salmon or steelhead in combination. Above the falls, two adipose fin-clipped adult salmon and three adipose fin-clipped steelhead may be retained in the daily bag.

STEELHEAD & SHAD

Permanent rules for steelhead and shad are in effect, except for the following modifications:

Effective March 16 – May 15, 2016, the Columbia River will be open for retention of adipose fin-clipped steelhead from Buoy 10 to the Highway 395 Bridge and shad from Buoy 10 to Bonneville Dam ONLY during days and in areas open for retention of adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook. Beginning May 16 permanent rules resume as listed in the 2016 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.

SMELT

A limited recreational smelt fishery is being considered for the Sandy River in 2016 but due to sporadic returns and difficulty predicting the arrival date for this run, ODFW intends to propose the 2016 regulations at a later date. Under Oregon’s 2016 sport fishing regulations, smelt-dippers will be required to have a fishing license for the first time this year.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife announced a bank-only recreational smelt fishery for the Cowlitz River, scheduled for 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Feb. 6. The daily bag limit is 10 pounds per person.

STURGEON

Effective 12:01 a.m. Monday, Feb. 8, the retention of sturgeon is prohibited in the mainstem Columbia River from Bonneville Dam upstream to The Dalles Dam, including adjacent tributaries. A summer retention fishery in Bonneville Pool will be considered at a later date.

ODFW staff plans to update the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission on the status of the sturgeon population in the lower Columbia River during the Commission’s February meeting.

Columbia Zone regulation updates can be found online at www.dfw.state.or.us/resources/fishing/reg_changes/columbia.asp

 

Burns Man Cited For Illegal Possession Of 4 Trophy Buck Skulls

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON STATE POLICE, FISH & WILDLIFE DIVISION

On January 21, 2016, at approximately 12:15 p.m. an OSP Fish and Wildlife trooper received an anonymous game complaint originating in the Burns area regarding a person to be in possession of multiple trophy mule deer. OSP Fish and Wildlife troopers contacted, JADEN SIMPSON, age 19, from Burns, and learned that he was in possession of four (4) trophy buck skulls.

(OSP)

UNDER OREGON’S LAWS, IT’S ILLEGAL TO POSSESS THE SKULL OF A DEER, ETC., WITHOUT A TAG FOR THAT ANIMAL. HOWEVER, SHED HUNTERS ARE ALLOWED TO COLLECT ANTLERS THEY FIND. (OSP)

OSP Fish and Wildlife troopers seized the four trophy buck skulls. SIMPSON was criminally cited for four (4) counts of Illegal Possession of Game Parts-Mule Deer Skulls and other wildlife charges will be forwarded to the Harney County District Attorney’s Office for consideration.

OSP Fish and Wildlife troopers were assisted by OSP Patrol Division troopers with the investigation.

UPDATE FEB. 10, 2016, 4:07 P.M. Here is what ODFW writes about the rules of possessing shed antlers:

Oregon Big Game Regulations (page 28) state that “No person shall possess or transport any game mammal or part thereof which has been illegally killed, found or killed for humane reasons, except shed antlers, unless they have notified and received permission from personnel of the Oregon State Police or ODFW prior to transporting.” So people may pick up naturally shed antlers in the outdoors, but may not pick up skulls with antlers attached without permission.

People who collect shed antlers are allowed to sell or exchange them, but certain rules apply. Only naturally shed antlers, antlers detached from the skull, or a skull split apart can be sold or exchanged. For antlers detached from the skull or skulls split apart, the seller must have legally taken the game part (e.g. on a big game tag or after receiving permission from OSP or ODFW to remove skull and antlers from the wild in the first place.)

Past poaching problems led to the regulations. Skulls that are split have less value and are not eligible for record books. These regulations reduce the incentive for someone to kill animals on winter range or out of season, hide the skull, and go back months later and “find it”. A Hide/Antler Dealer permit ($17) is needed to purchase antlers for use in the manufacture of handcrafted items.

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Bundys, 5 Others Arrested, 1 Dead As Lead Malheur Occupiers Captured

THE FOLLOWING ARE STATEMENTS FROM THE FBI AND OREGON STATE POLICE VIA THE EUGENE REGISTER GUARD; OSP; AND THE HARNEY COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE ANNOUNCING ANOTHER ARREST

At approximately 4:25 p.m. (PST) on Tuesday, January 26, 2016, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Oregon State Police (OSP) began an enforcement action to bring into custody a number of individuals associated with the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. During that arrest, there were shots fired.

One individual who was a subject of a federal probable cause arrest is deceased. We will not be releasing any information about that person pending identification by the medical examiner’s office.

One individual suffered non-life threatening injuries and was transported to a local hospital for treatment. He was arrested and is currently in custody.

The arrested individuals include:

* Ammon Edward Bundy, age 40, of Emmett, Idaho

* Ryan C. Bundy, age 43, of Bunkerville, Nevada

* Brian Cavalier, age 44, of Bunkerville, Nevada

* Shawna Cox, age 59, Kanab, Utah

* Ryan Waylen Payne, age 32, of Anaconda, Montana

These probable cause arrests occurred along Highway 235.

In a separate event in Burns, Oregon, at approximately 5:50 pm, Oregon State Police arrested the following individual:

* Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy, age 45, Cottonwood, Arizona

All of the named defendants face a federal felony charge of conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation, or threats, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 372.

We continue to work with Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward and his deputies; Oregon State Police; and the United States Attorney’s Office to address any further outstanding issues. As the investigation is ongoing, we cannot comment further at this time.

All defendants should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

…………….

On January 26, 2016 at approximately 4:30PM, Oregon State Police Troopers were involved in an officer involved shooting during the arrest of several individuals near Burns.

The Deschutes County Major Incident Team will be assisting the Oregon State Police and the Harney County District Attorney’s Office with the investigation. The investigation will be conducted in compliance with Senate Bill 111 which outlines protocols to be followed when deadly physical force is used.

As released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, one adult male suspect is deceased and one other adult male suspect received non-life threatening injuries. No law enforcement personnel were injured.

The incident occurred on Highway 395, about 20 miles north of Burns. Highway 395 is expected to be closed for an extended amount of time for the investigation to be conducted.

There will be no further information released until tomorrow. Please refer to an official release by the Federal Bureau of Investigation

……………….

Harney Cty. Sheriff ?@HarneyCoSheriff

At ~ 6:30 p.m., Pete Santilli was also arrested for same federal felony charges as others already arrested regarding the occupation.

 

(ODFW/OSU)

ODFW Posts Lead Ammo Survey Summary

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has posted the results of it and Oregon State University’s survey of hunters and others about lead ammunition.

The 27-page summary, available here, includes percentage breakdowns for dozens of questions about the element used in hunting bullets.

It shows opinions about the substance and its hazards often vary between the public and sportsmen.

(ODFW/OSU)

(ODFW/OSU)

University researchers are still analyzing the results, but in releasing the study, ODFW also refuted the idea that it was a precursor to a ban or more restrictive uses of lead-based ammo, as has begun to occur in California.

“This is not the case. There are no proposals by ODFW or the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission to ban or restrict the use of lead ammunition for hunting in Oregon,” agency spokeswoman Michelle Dennehy said in an email.

Still, she said that with what’s happening in the Golden State in terms of condor restoration — which one day could include the north end of California near the Oregon border — ODFW is anticipating that that “or litigation, legislation or a ballot initiative, could affect the use of lead ammunition and hunting and wildlife management in Oregon.”

“For these reasons, the Department believed it was important to understand the views of hunters and the public on this issue and ensure that those views are clearly understood and can be fairly represented in any future discussions regarding lead ammunition,” said Dennehy.

Lead shot for waterfowl was banned nationwide in the early 1990s.

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Cowlitz, Lower, Mid-Columbia Fishing Report (1-26-16)

THE FOLLOWING MATERIAL WAS TRANSMITTED BY JOE HYMER, PSMFC, AND IS COMPRISED OF MATERIAL COLLECTED BY WDFW AND OTHERS

Salmon/Steelhead

Cowlitz River – 14 bank anglers kept 1 hatchery winter run steelhead.  3 boat anglers had no catch.

Last week Tacoma Power recovered 90 coho adults, 18 jacks and 21 winter run steelhead during four days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 69 coho adults, eight jacks and 12 winter-run steelhead adults into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton.  They also released 17 coho adults, 10 coho jacks and two winter-run steelhead into Lake Scanewa at Cowlitz Falls Dam.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 10,000 cubic feet per second on Monday, January 25.

Bonneville Pool – No effort for steelhead.

The Dalles Pool – Boat anglers are catching some steelhead.

John Day Pool – Light effort and no steelhead catch was observed.

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Sturgeon

Bonneville Pool – Effort and catch picked up last week.  Boat anglers legal kept/released a legal for about every 5 rods.  No legals were observed caught by bank anglers.

The Dalles Pool – Boat anglers averaged about a legal kept per every 7 rods last week.  No catch was observed for bank anglers.

John Day Pool – Boat anglers are catching some legals.  Fishing was slow for bank anglers.

Walleye and Bass

Bonneville and The Dalles pools – No effort was observed for either specie in either pool.

John Day Pool – Boat anglers are catching some walleye at about a fish per every 5 rods when including fish released.  No effort was observed for bass.

ADFADA (COURTESY IDFG)

Grangeville Man First In IDFG’s C&R Record Book With Near-15-inch Perch

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

Thomas McLeod set two records with a yellow perch he caught at Lake Cascade in January. His 14.75-inch perch is the new state record for fish caught and released, and he gets an unofficial record as the first person to have a fish recorded in Fish and Game’s new records program.

“I can’t lose that one,” McLeod said.

ADFADA (COURTESY IDFG)

THOMAS MCLEOD IS THE FIRST ANGLER IN IDAHO FISH & GAME’S NEW CATCH-AND-RELEASE RECORD BOOK, THANKS TO THIS 14.75-INCH PERCH HE CAUGHT AT LAKE CASCADE. (COURTESY IDFG)

The 36-year-old said he planned on submitting a fish he caught during his trip to Cascade, and landed a bigger one in late December before the catch-and-release program started on Jan. 1.

His state-record perch also happened to be the first fish he caught for the day, “so that’s the one I went with,” he said.

But he added he wanted to take some home to eat, and while he would have released a bigger one, he didn’t catch one on that trip.

“I’m all about letting some of the big ones go and let someone else catch them, or let them spawn,” he said.

He’s also hoping he’s not a one-hit wonder. McLeod said he has fishing trips planned for steelhead, whitefish, and he may return to Cascade for more ice fishing for perch and trout.

He said he will enter whatever he catches.

“I want to see how many I can get,” he said.

So far, McLeod’s perch entry is the only catch-and-release record, so the rest are open to whoever submits a fish.

To submit an entry, anglers must complete the record fish application form and provide photographs of the fish (see details below) to Fish and Game. The form can be downloaded at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ by looking under the “Fishing” tab for “Record Fish.” Direct link: https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/fish/?getPage=82.

record

The form can also be printed and mailed to the department, or taken to a regional office.

Here are guidelines for submitting a catch-and-release record:

    • Fish must be released alive. They are judged by the total length from the tip of the snout to the end of the tail, with lobes of tail squeezed together. Sturgeon should be measured upside down along the belly from the snout to tip of the upper lobe of the tail fin.
    • To break a catch-and-release record, a fish must be at least one-half inch longer than the existing record, except for white sturgeon, which must at least 2-inches longer.
    • Anglers must submit at least one photo of the fish directly next to a ruler/tape or an object of known verifiable length. Photos cannot exceed 10MB in size if they’re to be emailed to Fish and Game.
    • Entries must include at least one photo of the angler with the fish. To reduce handling stress, salmon, steelhead and white sturgeon must be measured and photographed in the water.
    • Entries must include at least one witness to the measurement and release.
    • All applications must be submitted within 30 days of the catch date.
(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

Exciting Finish At Roche Harbor Salmon Classic In San Juans

THE FOLLOWING FISHING REPORT WAS SUBMITTED BY KEVIN KLEIN, PUGET SOUND ANGLERS

The 13th annual Roche Harbor Salmon Classic took place last weekend. Fishing was pretty darn slow for most anglers. Blake Stiller from Anacortes led most of the day Friday and almost all of Saturday with a 16.6lber.

While everyone tried to stay awake on Saturday during long dry spells, things got real exciting real quick in the last 30 minutes. With half an hour left to go in the tournament, we checked in a fish with the head check boat, and they had some interesting news. “Got an update for ya…Pete Nelsen 17.2, new leader”. Well, we couldn’t help but cheer. Ol’ Pete’s a good friend, and he was fishing with Jay Field, whose a brother to me. Heck, Jay, the “Reverend Captain”, married my bride and I, so I owe him one. If you’ve met her, you’d understand why.

But, I digress. For the uninitiated, Pete Nelsen has won over 30 derbies in the San Juan’s. Let that sink in for a minute. And  Jay, who is a former charter skipper, and great angler, has never taken the top spot in one. Let that also sink in. It’s very difficult to take first in a major tournament, and to do it more than once…mind boggling.

So, just when we were ready to give it up for Pete, we trolled by the check boat again. “Just heard that zone 4 checked a big fish…they’re running for the scales”! Oh, man. This would be a nail biter. So in the final minutes, Pete got bumped by Duke Fisher’s 17lb 12 oz Chinook  for the $10,000 1st prize.

These derbies are so fun and exciting because of finishes like this. And, it happens a lot. Thanks so much to Roche Harbor for another great event. Thanks also to the Northwest Salmon Derby Series, who help make all the derbies happen. It was great to see everybody again…old friends and new. If you haven’t participated in one of the events on the derby series, you should. It’s a blast.

Top Placings:

1st     Duke Fisher 17.12    $10,000
2nd   Pete Nelsen 17.02   $5000
3rd   Blake Stiller 16.60     $2500
Total Boat Weight: Derek Floyd 48lbs 9oz

Pictures:

cheryl

(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

1.       Well, it happens every year. Day before a big derby, someone nails a hog. This year it was Erol and Cheryl Turanciol with this 21lber. Ouch. They’re wishing they had that one on Friday.

pete16

(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

2.       Pete Nelsen of Shaw Island darn near pulled it off again with this 17lb fish. Well, $5000 for second ain’t bad. Uncle Pete also furthered his widely recognized reputation as the old G.O.A.T., or Greatest of All Time. Best there is, was and prolly ever will be. The Legend, bubba.

roche derby 2

(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

3.       Let’s go get ‘em! Teams run out of Roche on their way to the fishing grounds. Hatchery Chinook provide clipped stocks for us to fish on in these events, and also are a big boost to business’s and the community this time of year. The anti-hatchery zealots would strive to shut down recreational fishing it would seem, and all the economic benefits, license fees, jobs, and fun that goes with it. I’m not sure what they have against Orcas either, but it sure seems like they’re trying to cut off a major food supply for them. We need to start taking a hard look at real issues that are responsible for declining stocks, such as the recent study showing significant predation on juvenile salmon by booming Harbor Seals populations, as well as many others. There are many, many other issues that we should be focusing on that will do real good. Recreational anglers keeping hatchery fish isn’t one of them. Please do what you can to get involved. Strength in numbers.

chuckreelin

(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

4.       Chuck Payne and Greg Gorder working as a team to land a potential derby winner. There’s a sense of excitement leading up to these tournaments that’s hard to beat.

(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

(COURTESY KEVIN KLEIN)

5.       Duke Fisher and team with the $10,000 top  fish. They are good guys as well as good fishermen, and deserved a win. Lots of folks like this around, who have been dedicated, but never won. I’ve been lucky enough to have been on the winning team in the Roche twice. When I say lucky, I mean it…but man…what a rush.