April 25, 1997
Contact: Jeff Weathersby, (360) 902-2256
Ocean sport halibut season opens May 1; Puget Sound seasons opens May 22
Recreational halibut fishing seasons open May 1 in the ocean and on May 22 in
Puget Sound, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife announced today.
Seasons and catch limits are as follows:
- Marine Area 1 (Ilwaco): Open May 1 through Sept. 30 or until the quota of
6,215 pounds of halibut are harvested; one-fish bag limit, 32-inch minimum size.
- Marine Area 2 (Westport): Open May 1 or until 19,483 pounds of halibut have
been caught. The area from Ocean Shores north to the Queets River and east of 124
degrees and 40 minutes will remain open through Sept. 30 or until the season quota of
20,483 pounds has been landed; one-fish bag limit, no minimum size. The off-shore
area west of 124 degrees, 40 minutes and from Copalis Head (47 degrees, 10 minutes)
to the Queets River is closed at all times.
- Marine Area 3 and the portion of Area 4 west of the Bonilla-Tatoosh Line
(LaPush and Swiftsure): Open May 1 through June 30 or until 81,099 pounds of halibut
have been caught. It re-opens July 1 through Sept. 30 or until the year's catch exceeds
96,088 pounds. It is closed on Sundays and Mondays; one-fish bag limit, no minimum
size. As last year, a rectangle-shaped area west of the Portage Head-Lake Ozette area
and defined by longitude and latitude (see page 14 of the Fishing in Washington sport
fishing regulations pamphlet for details) is closed.
Fishers can call (360) 796-3215 for weekly catch updates.
- Marine Areas 5-13 and the portion of Area 4 east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh
Line (Puget Sound): Open May 22 through Aug. 10, closed on Tuesdays and
Wednesdays; one-fish bag limit with no size limit; free halibut catch record card
required. Cards have been distributed to license dealers.
The halibut seasons and regulations were developed by the Washington
Department of Fish and Wildlife, Pacific Fishery Management Council and International
Pacific Halibut Commission.