WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

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April 07, 2006
Contact: Pat Pattillo, (360) 902-2705

Increased salmon fishing restrictions
reflect low returns, conservation needs

SACRAMENTO – With lower salmon returns predicted, fishing seasons approved late Thursday for Washington’s waters include increased restrictions this year for anglers in Puget Sound, the Columbia River and along the coast.

Recreational ocean quotas of 31,000 chinook and 73,200 coho salmon were approved by the federal Pacific Fishery Management Council, which sets harvest limits in waters three to 200 miles offshore. Those quotas are much lower than last year’s sport quotas of 43,250 chinook and 121,800 coho.

The increased restrictions are necessary to meet state, tribal and federal conservation objectives for weak wild chinook and coho salmon stocks, said Jeff Koenings, director of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

“Protecting weak wild salmon stocks is our biggest goal in crafting recreational and commercial fisheries,” Koenings said. “With this fishing package, we meet those important conservation objectives and still provide sustainable fisheries this year in Washington’s waters.”

The recent listing of lower Columbia River wild coho salmon under the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) was the main reason for additional restrictions this year.

“Fishing changes required by the recent listing of lower Columbia River coho underscore the need to develop new fishing opportunities that limit impacts on weak salmon stocks,” Koenings said. “With changes, such as re-tooling our hatchery production, we should be able to provide meaningful and sustainable fisheries that target hatchery-origin salmon and healthy runs that do exist in the river.”

Developed by WDFW and tribal co-managers, the 2006 fishing package includes regulations for salmon fisheries in all nearshore coastal, Puget Sound and Columbia River waters.

“There were a number of difficult issues we had to work through in crafting fishing opportunities this year,” said Phil Anderson, WDFW special assistant to the director. “Providing meaningful fishing opportunities wouldn’t be possible without strong cooperation between the state, the tribes and our constituents.”

Most of the fisheries in Puget Sound will look similar to last year. However, some additional restrictions are needed this year to protect Puget Sound chinook salmon, which are listed under the federal ESA.

Additional restrictions this year in Puget Sound include:

  • The Skokomish River, where all fishing will be closed Sept. 14 through Sept. 30;

  • The Puyallup River, where the month of August will be closed to salmon fishing; and

  • Elliott Bay, where fishing will only be allowed from July 14 through Aug. 20, Fridays through Sundays.

Details will be provided in the upcoming 2006-2007 Fishing in Washington pamphlet.

2006 recreational fisheries include:

Marine Area 1 (Leadbetter Point south):

July 3-Sept. 30: 36,600 coho sub quota. Open Sunday through Thursday, two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Release wild coho. Minimum size for chinook is 24 inches. Minimum size for coho is 16 inches. Chinook guideline is 8,300.

Buoy 10:

Aug. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 24 inches; minimum size for coho is 16 inches. Release sockeye, chum and wild coho.

Marine Area 2 (Queets River to Leadbetter Point):

July 3-Sept. 17: 27,603 coho sub quota. Open Sunday through Thursday, two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Release wild coho. Minimum size for chinook is 24 inches; minimum size for coho is 16 inches. Chinook guideline is 18,100. Grays Harbor Control Zone closed beginning Aug. 1.

Area 2.1 [east of a line from Leadbetter Point to Cape Shoalwater (Willapa Bay)]:

July 3-July 31: Open concurrent with Marine Area 2 when Area 2 is open for salmon. Area 2 rules apply.

Aug. 1-Aug. 15: Six fish daily limit, no more than two adults; 12 inch minimum size limit. Single-point barbless hooks required. Aug. 16-Jan. 31: Six fish daily limit, no more than three adults; no more than two chinook; 12 inch minimum size. Single-point barbless hooks required.

Area 2.2 [east of a line between tips of exposed jetties (Grays Harbor)]:

West of Buoy 13 line: July 3-July 31, open concurrent with Area 2 when it is open for salmon. Area 2 rules apply. Closed beginning Aug. 1.

East of Buoy 13 line: Closed for salmon through Sept. 15.

Sept. 16-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit, release all chinook; 12 inch minimum size; single-point barbless hooks required.

Oct. 1-Oct. 15: Two fish daily limit, no more than one chinook: 12 inch minimum size; single-point barbless hooks required.

Oct. 16-Nov. 30: Two fish daily limit, release all chinook: 12 inch minimum size limit; single-point barbless hooks required.

Marine Area 3 (Cape Alava to Queets River):

June 30-Sept. 17: 1,889 coho sub quota. Open Tuesday through Saturday, two fish daily limit, no more than one of which may be a chinook. Release wild coho; minimum size for chinook is 24 inches, and minimum size for coho is 16 inches. Chinook guideline is 1,300 fish.

Sept. 23-Oct. 8: LaPush area late season fishery. Two fish daily limit, no more than one of which may be a chinook. Release wild coho. Minimum size for chinook is 24 inches, and minimum size for coho is 16 inches. Fishery restricted to an area north of 47 degrees 50.00 latitude and south of 48 degrees 00.00 north latitude.

Marine Area 4 (U.S. /Canada border to Cape Alava and East to Sekiu River):

June 30-Sept. 17: 7,058 coho sub quota. Open Tuesday through Saturday, two fish per day, only one of which may be a chinook. Release wild coho; minimum size for chinook is 24 inches; minimum size for coho is 16 inches. Release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 30. Chinook guideline: 3,200; chinook non-retention east of Bonilla-Tatoosh line beginning Aug. 1. Closed to salmon angling July 1-July 31 east of Sail Rock. Closed to salmon angling July 1-Sept. 30 inside the area bounded by a line from Kydaka Point to Shipwreck Point.

Marine Area 5 (Sekiu and Pillar Point):

May 1-June 30: Closed.

July 1-Aug. 31: Two fish daily limit. Chinook 22 inch minimum size. Release wild chinook, wild coho and chum. Areas 5 and 6 season quota of 3,500 landed chinook, or 62 days of fishing; afterwards, release all chinook. South of Kydaka Point-Shipwreck Point line – closed to salmon angling.

Sept. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit. Release all chinook, wild coho and chum. South of Kydaka Point-Shipwreck Point line – closed to salmon angling.

Oct. 1-Oct. 31: Closed.

Nov. 1-Nov. 30: Two fish daily limit, no more than one chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Dec. 1-Feb. 15: Closed.

Feb. 16-April 10: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

April 11-30: Closed.

Marine Area 6 (East Juan de Fuca Strait):

May 1-June 30: Closed.

July 1-Aug. 31: Chinook Selective Fishery: West of a true north/south line through the #2 Buoy immediately east of Ediz Hook; two fish daily limit. Chinook 22 inch minimum size; release wild chinook, wild coho and chum. Areas 5 and 6 season quota of 3,500 landed chinook, or 62 days of fishing. Port Angeles Harbor – closed to salmon angling. Freshwater Bay – closed to angling.

July 1-Aug. 31: Chinook Release Area: East of a true north/south line through the #2 Buoy immediately east of Ediz Hook; two fish daily limit; release all chinook, wild coho, and chum. Dungeness Bay closed to salmon angling.

Sept. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit. Release all chinook, wild coho and chum. Freshwater Bay – closed to angling. Port Angeles Harbor – closed to salmon angling. Dungeness Bay closed to salmon angling.

Oct. 1-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit, no more than one chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Freshwater Bay closed to angling. Port Angeles Harbor closed to salmon angling. Sequim Bay closed to salmon angling. Discovery Bay, south of a line from Gardiner boat launch to Beckett Point, closed to salmon angling.

Nov. 1-Feb. 15: Closed.

Feb. 16-April 10: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Dungeness Bay closed to salmon angling.

April 11-April 30: Closed.

Marine Area 7 (San Juan Islands):

May 1-June 30: Closed.

July 1-July 31: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Southern Rosario Strait/Eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca closed to salmon angling. Bellingham and Samish Bay closed to salmon angling.

Aug. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish limit, only one of which may be a chinook, release chum and wild coho. Southern Rosario Strait/Eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca closed to salmon angling. Bellingham Bay closed to salmon angling Aug. 1-15; Samish Bay closed to salmon angling.

Oct. 1-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Samish Bay closed Oct. 1-Oct. 15.

Nov. 1-Nov. 30: Two fish limit, release chinook.

Dec. 1-Jan. 31: Closed.

Feb.1-Mar. 31: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

April 1-30: Closed.

Bellingham Bay terminal area: May 1-Aug. 15: Closed to salmon angling.

Aug. 16-Oct. 31: Four fish limit, no more than two chinook (minimum size 22 inches); Samish Bay closed to salmon angling through Oct. 15.

Nov. 1-April 15: Same as Area 7.

April 16-April 30: Closed to salmon angling.

Marine Area 8-1 (Deception Pass, Hope Island, and Skagit Bay):

May 1-July 31: Closed to salmon angling.

Aug. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish limit, release chinook.

Oct. 1-April 30: Two fish limit, chinook 22 inch minimum size, release wild chinook.

Marine Area 8-2 (Port Susan and Port Gardner):

May 1-July 31: Closed to salmon angling.

Aug. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish limit, release chinook.

Oct. 1-April 30: Two fish limit, chinook 22 inch minimum size, release wild chinook.

Tulalip Terminal Area Recreational Fishery: Same as Area 8-2, except during the period June 2 through Sept. 25. Open 12:01 a.m. Friday – 11:59 a.m. Monday of each week. Except closed June 17. Open within Tulalip Terminal Area boundaries only. Closed east of a line from Mission Point to Hermosa Point. Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Marine Area 9 (Admiralty Inlet):

May 1-July 15: Closed.

July 16-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit; release chinook and chum.

Oct. 1-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit, release chinook.

Nov. 1-Nov. 30: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Dec. 1-Jan. 31: Closed.

Feb. 1-April 15: One fish limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

April 16-April 30: Closed.

Edmonds Pier: Open year-round with a two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Chum must be released Aug. 1-Sept. 30.

Marine Area 10 (Seattle-Bremerton):

May 1-May 30: Closed

June 1-June 30: Waters north of Meadow Point/Point Monroe line, catch and release.

July 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit, chinook release, chum release Aug. 1-Sept. 15; Shilshole Bay (east of Meadow Point/West Point line) closed to salmon angling July 1-Aug. 31; Outer Elliott Bay (east of West Point to Alki Point line to Pier 91/Duwamish Head line) closed to salmon angling July 1-Aug. 31. Inner Elliott Bay (east of Pier 91/Duwamish Head line) closed to salmon angling July 1-Aug. 31 except for indicated openings identified in "Inner Elliott Bay" section below.

Oct. 1-Oct. 15: Two fish daily limit, release chinook.

Oct. 16-Nov. 30: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Dec. 1-Jan. 31: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches; Agate Pass catch and release, flyfishing only, Jan. 1-Jan. 31.

Feb. 1-April 30: Closed.

Inner Elliott Bay: Friday through Sunday, July 14-Aug. 20: Open east of Pier 91/Duwamish Head line. Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release chum. Other times – same as Marine Area 10 regulations.

Sinclair Inlet: July 1-Sept. 30: Open south of Manette Bridge, south of line drawn true west from Battle Point and west of line true south from Point White, two fish limit, and minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 15. Other times – same as Marine Area 10.

Area 10 Piers: Seacrest Pier, Pier 86, Waterman Pier, Bremerton Boardwalk, Illahee State Park Pier - Open year-round with a two-fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 15.

Marine Area 11 (Tacoma-Vashon):

May 1-May 31: Closed.

June 1-June 30: Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Commencement Bay closed to salmon angling east of Cliff House Restaurant/Sperry Dock line.

July 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit. Minimum size 22 inches for chinook. Commencement Bay closed to salmon angling east of Cliff House Restaurant/Sperry Dock line through Aug. 11.

Oct. 1-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Nov. 1-Dec. 31: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Jan. 1-Feb. 15: Closed.

Feb. 16-April 10: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

April 11-April 30: Closed.

Dash Point Dock, Point Defiance Boathouse Dock, Les Davis Pier, Des Moines Pier and Redondo Pier: Open year-round with a two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Marine Area 12 (Hood Canal):

May 1-June 30: Entire area closed.

July 1-Aug. 31: North of Ayock Point – closed to salmon angling, except see Quilcene/Dabob Bay recreational fishery below.

Sept. 1-Oct. 15: North of Ayock Point, open for coho only with a four fish daily limit.

July 1-Oct. 15: South of Ayock Point, open with a four fish daily limit, only two of which may be chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Chum must be released.

Oct. 16-Dec. 31: Entire area open with a four fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Jan. 1-Feb. 15: Closed.

Feb. 16-April 10: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

April 11-April 30: Closed.

Hoodsport Hatchery Zone: July 1-Dec. 31: Four fish daily limit, only two of which may be chinook 24 inches or longer. No minimum size. Release chum July 1-Oct. 15; night closure.

Quilcene-Dabob Bay: Aug. 16-Aug. 31: Four fish daily limit, coho only. All other times – same as Marine Area 12 regulations.

Marine Area 13 (South Puget Sound):

May 1-June 30: Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Carr Inlet (north of Penrose Point/Green Point line) closed to salmon angling.

July 1-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release wild coho; Carr Inlet (north of Penrose Point/Green Point line) closed July 1-31, except open to flyfishing only for hatchery coho; Minter Creek mouth closed through Sept. 30; Lower Budd Inlet closed July 16 through Oct. 31.

Nov. 1-Dec. 31: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Jan. 1-Jan. 31: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.

Feb. 1-Feb. 28: Closed.

March 1-April 30: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Carr Inlet (north of Penrose Point/Green Point line) closed April 16-April 30.

Fox Island Pier Recreational: Open year-round, two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release wild coho July 1-Oct. 31.