OLYMPIA – As of 12:01 a.m. Thursday (Aug. 30) anglers will no longer be able to retain chinook salmon caught in the mouth of the Columbia River, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced today.
However, anglers will be able to benefit from a higher bag limit for hatchery coho that goes into effect at the same time, boosting the allowable daily catch from three to four fish per day. Anglers may fish in the Buoy 10 area after catching their daily ocean limit of two salmon, as long as they do not exceed the daily Buoy 10 limit. However, anglers are prohibited from fishing in the Buoy 10 area if they have a chinook caught in another area in their possession.
"The guideline for chinook is projected to be achieved by Wednesday evening," said Cindy LeFleur, Columbia River harvest manager for WDFW.
By then, anglers will have caught the 8,800 adult chinook salmon reserved for the recreational catch in the Buoy 10 fishery.
The good news, LeFleur said, is that there are still plenty of hatchery coho salmon to be caught in both areas, many weighing in at eight pounds or more. Coho fishing is scheduled to continue through the end of the year in the Buoy 10 area.
In the mainstem Columbia River fishery above the Rocky Point-Tongue Point line, anglers are allowed a daily bag limit of six salmon, no more than two of which may be adults. All sockeye and chum must be released. Only coho with a clipped adipose fin, indicating hatchery origin, may be kept below John Day dam.
For additional information on this regulation change at Buoy 10 click here.