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June 30, 2005
Contact: WDFW Region 5 Office, (360) 696-6211

Sturgeon retention fishery extended
in Columbia River estuary

VANCOUVER – Sport anglers will get nine additional days of catch-and-keep sturgeon fishing in the Columbia River estuary in July, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced today.

Legal-sized sturgeon retention will be allowed from July 5-10 and from July 15-17 in estuary and lower Columbia River, which is defined as all waters downstream of the Wauna power line crossing at river mile 40 near Cathlamet.

Brad James, WDFW regional fish biologist, said more than 4,000 sturgeon remain under the annual harvest guideline.

Fishery managers anticipate that 13,650 sturgeon will be harvested by the end of the current retention fishery, which was scheduled to close one hour after sunset on July 4. That leaves approximately 4,150 sturgeon remaining from the 17,800-fish annual harvest guideline.

James said sturgeon must be between 45 and 60 inches to retain. There is a daily limit of one sturgeon and an annual limit of five fish.

WDFW and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife are scheduled to hold a joint state hearing July 13 to assess harvest totals and consider if additional fishing time is warranted in the lower Columbia River, James said.