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

April 08, 2004
Contact: Pat Pattillo, (360) 902-2705
Or: Doug Williams, (360) 902-2256

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Washington's salmon fishing seasons set for 2004

SACRAMENTO - Salmon anglers fishing in Washington's marine areas can again look forward to significant chinook and coho salmon opportunities this summer under a comprehensive fisheries package tentatively approved today.

The season package, completed today in conjunction with the federal Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC), set recreational harvest ceilings of 44,500 chinook and 202,500 coho salmon for Washington's coastal areas.

The fishing seasons, developed by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and treaty Indian tribal co-managers, protect weak stocks and provide a variety of fishing opportunities for anglers in the ocean, the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound, said Phil Anderson, special assistant to WDFW Director Jeff Koenings.

Recreational salmon fisheries would begin June 27 in all coastal areas (Marine Areas 1-4). Chinook must be at least 26 inches. As in recent seasons, coho caught in coastal areas must have a clipped adipose fin, identifying them as hatchery fish.

"This package allows us to meet crucial conservation objectives while providing sustainable salmon fisheries," said WDFW Director Jeff Koenings. "These fisheries will allow for solid recreational and commercial fisheries that play a major economic role in many communities throughout our state."

The Puget Sound fishing package is under review by federal fisheries managers for compliance with the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and will not be final until the review is completed.

Under the package, anglers will again be able to fish for hatchery-marked chinook salmon in the western Strait of Juan de Fuca this summer. This mark-selective fishery - in which anglers can only retain hatchery fish that have had the adipose fin removed - will begin July 1 in the western Strait. The fishery will run for 41 days or until 3,500 hatchery chinook have been landed.

A few of the 2004 Puget Sound fishing opportunities will differ from those in 2003. For example, the popular Tulalip Bay "bubble" fishery is tentatively scheduled to begin two weeks earlier this summer to target a strong return of hatchery chinook salmon. Sport anglers fishing for coho salmon in the lower Green and Skagit rivers will have the opportunity to take advantage of expected abundant returns on those rivers with three-fish daily bag limits, compared to two fish last year.

Other sport fisheries, including chinook salmon sport fisheries in the Skokomish and Puyallup river systems, will be more restrictive this year to meet conservation objectives.

Marine Area 1 (Leadbetter Point south):
  • June 27 -Sept. 30. 101,250 coho subquota. Open Sunday through Thursday, two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip. Minimum size for chinook is 26 inches. Chinook guideline 8,000. Closed in Columbia Control Zone.

Buoy 10:

  • Aug. 1-Sept. 30 two fish daily limit, only 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):

  • June 27 - Sept. 19: 74,900 coho subquota. Open Sunday through Thursday, two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; minimum size for chinook is 26 inches; chinook guideline is 30,800.

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

  • June 27-Aug. 15: Open concurrent with Marine Area 2, when Area 2 is open for salmon. Area 2 rules apply.
  • Aug. 16-Jan. 31: Six fish daily limit, two adults; 12-inch minimum size limit. Single-point barbless hooks required.

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

  • West of Buoy 13 line: June 27-Sept. 15, open concurrent with Area 2 when it is open for salmon through Aug. 15 only. Area 2 rules apply.
  • East of Buoy 13 line: June 27-Sept. 15, closed for salmon. Sept. 16-Nov. 30: Six fish daily limit, two adults, only one of which may be an adult chinook; 12 inch minimum size limit; single point barbless hooks required.

Marine Area 3 (Cape Alava to Queets River):

  • June 27-Sept. 19. 5,200 coho subquota. Open seven days per week, two fish daily limit, no more than one of which may be a chinook. Retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; minimum size for chinook is 26 inches.
  • Sept. 25-Oct. 10. LaPush area late season fishery. Two fish daily limit, no more than one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 26 inches. Fishery restricted to an area within three miles of shore 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 27-Sept. 19. 21,050 coho sub quota. Open seven days per week, two fish per day, only one of which may be a chinook. Chum non-retention during August and September. Retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; minimum size for chinook is 26 inches. Chinook non-retention east of Bonilla-Tatoosh line beginning Aug. 1. Closed to salmon fishing east of a true north/south line through Sail Rock, July 1-31.

Marine areas 5-6 (Sekiu-Port Angeles):

  • May 1-June 30: closed.
  • July 1-Aug. 10: Two fish daily limit. Coho and chinook mark selective fishery, except chinook non-retention east of Ediz Hook, chum non-retention. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Areas 5 and 6 chinook season quota of 3,500 landed adipose fin-clipped chinook, or 41 days of fishing.
  • Aug. 11-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit. Coho mark selective fishery. Chinook and chum release.
  • Oct. 1-Oct. 31: Closed, except Dungeness Bay.
  • 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-Feb. 15: Closed.
  • Feb. 16-April 10: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • April 11-30: Closed.

Marine Area 7 (San Juan Islands):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed.
  • July 1-31: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Closed waters are: Rosario Strait, easterly of a line from Lummi Rocks/Peapod Rocks/Lydia Shoal due south to Black Rock, southerly to the easternmost point on James Island, and southerly to the marker on Bird Rocks, westerly to the marker across to Lopez Pass, eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca and Bellingham Bay closed.
  • Aug. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release unmarked coho, release chum. Closed waters: South Rosario Strait and eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca (east boundary defined by a line drawn true south of Salmon Banks buoy), Bellingham Bay closed Aug. 1-15.
  • Oct. 1-31: Two fish daily limit, release chinook. Samish Bay closed Oct. 1-Oct. 15.
  • Nov. 1-Nov. 30: Two fish limit, only of which one may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • 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:

  • Aug. 16-Oct. 31: Four fish daily limit, only two of which may be a chinook.

Marine Area 8-1:

  • May 1-July 31: Closed.
  • Aug. 1-Oct. 31: Two daily fish limit. Chinook release.
  • 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 to Jan. 31: Closed.
  • Feb.1-Mar. 31: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • April 1-30: Closed.

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

  • May 1-July 31: Closed.
  • Aug. 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-Feb. 15: Closed.
  • Feb. 16-April 10: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • April 11-30: Closed.
  • Closed east of the line from Mission Point to Hermosa Point.

Tulalip Special Area Recreational Fishery:

  • Same as Area 8-2, except during the period tentatively scheduled to begin June 18 and run through Sept. 27. Open 12:01 a.m. Friday - 11:59 a.m. Monday of each week. Open within Tulalip Special Area boundaries only. Closed east of the 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-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit, release chinook, release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 30.
  • Nov. 1-30: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • Dec. 1-Jan. 31: Closed.

Edmonds Pier: Opens June 16 with a two fish daily limit, only one of which one may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Chum must be released Aug. 1-Sept. 30.

Hood Canal Bridge: Closed.

Marine Area 10 (Seattle-Bremerton):

  • May 1-June 15: Closed
  • June 16-June 30 (tentatively scheduled): Catch and release in waters north of Meadow Point / Point Monroe line. Unlawful to bring salmon into the boat.
  • July 1-Oct. 31: Two fish daily limit, chinook release, chum release Aug. 1 to Sept. 15; Shilshole Bay (east of Meadow Point/West Point line) closed July 1- Aug. 31; Elliott Bay (east of West Point to Alki Point line) closed July 1-Aug. 31, (except Elliott Bay fishing piers and Elliott Bay season). Special gear restrictions in the Duwamish Waterways area when open.
  • Nov. 1-30: Two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • Dec. 1-15: Closed.
  • Dec. 16-Feb. 29: One fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches.
  • Mar.1-April 30: Closed.

Elliott Bay: July 16-Aug.22: Open east of Pier 91/Duwamish Head line, weekly, 12:01 a.m. Friday to 11:59 p.m. Sunday, two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 15. Special gear restrictions in Duwamish waterways area when open.

Sinclair Inlet: July 1-Sept. 30: Open south of Manette Bridge, south of line drawn true west from Battle Point and west of line south from Point White, two fish limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 15. Same regulations as Area 10 from May 1-June 30 and Oct. 1 to April 30.

Area 10 Piers: Seacrest Pier, Pier 86, Waterman Pier, Bremerton Boardwalk, Illahee State Park Pier: Opens June 16 with a two-fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release all chum Aug. 1-Sept. 15.

Marine Area 11 (Tacoma-Vashon):

  • May 1-June 15: Closed.
  • Tentatively scheduled to open June 16-Oct. 31: Open with a two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Commencement Bay closed to salmon fishing June 1-July 31.
  • Nov. 1-Dec. 31: Open with a 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 11-30: Closed.

Dash Point Dock, Point Defiance Boathouse Dock, Les Davis Pier, Des Moines Pier and Redondo Pier: Opens June 16 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):

  • Entire Area: Closed May 1-June 30.
  • July 1-Oct. 15: South of Ayock Point, four fish daily limit, only two of which may be chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Chum must be released.
  • July 1-Aug. 31: Closed north of Ayock Point, except see Quilcene/Dabob Bay fishery.
  • 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 11-30: Closed.

Quilcene-Dabob Bay: Aug. 16-Oct. 15, four-fish daily limit, coho only. Hoodsport Hatchery Zone: Open July 1-Dec. 31. Open with a four fish daily limit, only two of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 24 inches. Release chum July 1-Oct. 15.

Marine Area 13 (South Puget Sound):

  • May 1-June 15: Closed.
  • Tentatively scheduled June 16-30: Two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Carr Inlet (north of Penrose Point/Green Point line) closed.
  • July 1- Oct. 31: Open with a two fish daily limit. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Wild coho must be released; Carr Inlet closed July 1-31, except open to flyfishing only for marked 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-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: Opens June 16, two fish daily limit, only one of which may be a chinook. Minimum size for chinook is 22 inches. Release unmarked coho July 1-Oct. 31.