This will come as no surprise given the low forecasts, but limits on three Columbia Gorge springer tribs on the Washington side are being reduced as fish begin to arrive in the coming weeks and months.
WDFW announced that only one adult hatchery spring Chinook per day can be retained at Drano Lake and the Wind and Klickitat Rivers. The change takes effect March 16 on the first two, April 1 on the third.
“Reducing the adult salmon daily limit will provide continued opportunity for anglers to harvest spring Chinook and help ensure future hatchery returns,” the agency stated.
Just 4,600 are expected back to Drano, 2,000 to the Wind and 1,800 to the Klickitat.
Springer returns are down throughout the Columbia Basin, but on the positive side ODFW recently announced that the Hood River would again open April 15, and given the “relatively strong return,” the daily limit would remain at two hatchery fish.
(However, the Deschutes won’t open for spring kings, according to ODFW.)
And elsewhere on the lower end of the Columbia system, WDFW today said that hatchery winter steelhead season on Salmon Creek, near Vancouver, will be extended March 16-May 22.
The January 2017 Mitchell Act biological opinion mandated a switch from early-timed, out-of-basin Chambers Creek fish to a later timed local-origin stock.