Rules Category: Eastern Washington and Columbia Region Freshwater
Species covered in proposed rule • Steelhead
Rule to Change: From boundary markers above Klickitat Salmon Hatchery upstream
WHITEFISH Dec. 1-Mar. 31 No min. size. Daily limit 15 WHITEFISH only. Whitefish gear rules.
New Rule Proposal: Whitefish angling only open during Steelhead Season on the Klickitat and Wenatchee Rivers
Why the change is needed: The Klickitat whitefish season coincides with wild steelhead spawn timing and distribution creating a critical conservation need to protect naturally spawning and staging steelhead. Extensive monitoring by the Yakima Tribe and WDFW has resulted in empirical data showing the majority of wild steelhead spawning takes place within this rule proposal location and timing. Anglers on the Yakima have knowingly targeted steelhead under whitefish seasons and guides and anglers have been cited for poaching and illegally targeting steelhead during the whitefish season on the Klickitat. While some anglers enjoy targeting whitefish, other anglers use the open whitefish season to target steelhead in the Klickitat during the winter and early spring months. Furthermore, incidentally catching and releasing steelhead on whitefish gear may increase C&R mortality by landing steelhead on inappropriate tackle.
Names of individuals or groups with whom you have discussed this change: The Wild Fish Conservancy - Trent Donohue and Nick Gayeski.
Native Fish Society - Mike Moody.
American Rivers - David Moryc, Senior Director River Protection Program.
Bill McMillan, Biologist and Outdoor writer.
John McMillan, Fish Research Scientist.
Wild Salmon Center - Devona Ensmenger.
Conservation Angler - Pete Soverel.
Will Atlas, Steelhead Conservation Committee – Federation of Fly Fishers.
Doug Schaad, Conservation Committee - Washington Fly Fishing Club.
Dave Steinbaugh, Waters West.
Dave McCoy, Emerald Water Anglers.
Bill Robinson, Fish Advocate and Chair of the WDFW SCPAG.
Mike Gross, WDFW Biologist.
Describe their support and/or concerns:
This Rule proposal is supported by all listed above.
Submitted by: LUKE KELLY (CONTACT), WILD STEELHEAD COALITION — KIRKLAND, WA
Date submitted: 06/14/2012
WDFW Rule Proposal Recommendation
Not Recommended for further consideration Reference ID: DFW314719
Current regulations are consistent with steelhead protection.
Online Public Comments(1 comments)
RINGLEE, CHRIS September 21, 2012 GIG HARBOR, WA Comments: Please consider additional enforcement during whitefish seasons on the Klickitat as many angler knowingly and willingly target steelhead under the guise of the whitefish fishery.