OLYMPIA – The recreational halibut fishery off Ilwaco will close at the end of the day Friday, May 29 after four weeks of fishing, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced today.
Fishing ends at 11:59 p.m. on May 29, by which time anglers are expected to reach the 11,014-pound quota for the early season in Marine Area 1, said Heather Reed, coastal policy coordinator.
The area has been open to halibut fishing three days a week since May 1. Any quota remaining after May 29 will be added to the quota for the late-season fishery scheduled to open Aug. 7, three days a week (Friday-Sunday).
Reed reminds anglers that no other bottom fish may be taken, retained, possessed or landed, except sablefish and Pacific cod, if halibut are onboard the vessel.
Meanwhile, halibut fishing remains open on Sundays only in Marine Area 2 off Westport. Halibut fishing in marine areas 3 and 4 will be open two more days, May 21 and 23. If sufficient quota remains, the fishery will reopen June 4 and 6. The halibut fishery in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and all other areas of Puget Sound except Hood Canal is open five days a week (Thursday through Monday).
For the latest rule changes, call the fishing hotline at (360) 902-2500, or visit http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations.