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November 17, 1997
Contact: Jeff Weathersby, (360) 902-2256

Dyes Inlet closes to chum fishing

BREMERTON -- Dyes Inlet has been closed to recreational chum salmon fishing, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife announced today.

Non-Indian commercial fishing for chum ended last month.

Recreational fishing is now closed for chum fishing in waters north of the Manette Bridge.

Department biologists said closure was necessary because surveys of Chico and other creeks leading into the inlet showed spawning goals are not being met. The spawning goal for the basin is 14,000 and the surveys so far have shown only 8,800 chum have reached the gravel.

Biologists said the chum run into the inlet appears to be about 70 percent below preseason forecasts.

The biologists can't explain why the chum run is smaller than expected, although killer whales feeding in the inlet for several weeks probably have played a role.

Fishing for other salmon species remains open in the inlet. Fishers are advised not to use gear normally used for chum in the inlet.