OLYMPIA – The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is accepting public comment on a proposed package of sport fishing rules for the 2008-09 fishing season.
All 78 proposed rules for freshwater and saltwater fisheries are available on WDFW’s website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/rule_proposals/index.htm. Printed copies of the package are available by contacting WDFW’s Fish Program at (360) 902-2700.
Comments submitted by mail must be received by Nov. 1. Comments can be submitted to WDFW Rules Coordinator Lori Preuss via email at email@example.com or by mail: 600 Capitol Way N., Olympia, WA, 98501.
The public also will have an opportunity to provide testimony, as well as written comments, on the proposed rule changes during a Nov. 2-3 meeting of the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission in Chelan. Check the commission’s website (http://wdfw.wa.gov/com/comintro.htm) for the specific day and time.
The commission, which sets policy for WDFW, is scheduled to vote on the final sport fishing rules package during a meeting in February 2008.
Proposed rule changes within the 2008-09 sport fishing package include:
- Replacing the non-buoyant lure restriction with a new anti-snagging rule (only one single hook, fish must be hooked in the mouth, night closure);
- Changing the size measurement for sturgeon from total length to fork length;
- Separating limits for largemouth and smallmouth bass statewide;
- Allowing anglers to purchase a second catch record card for hatchery steelhead;
- Closing clam and oyster beaches that are designated as polluted and pose a risk to human health; and
- Making season and area adjustments to protect listed bull trout and steelhead stocks.