RAYMOND – Young people here have a new reason to grab a fishing pole and head down to Cases Pond, a juvenile-only fishing area reserve for anglers age 14 and younger.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) today planted 200 coho salmon in Cases Pond, and plans to release at least 200 more coho in the pond next week.
The salmon – averaging about 8 pounds – are being trucked to Cases Pond from the nearby Forks Creek Hatchery, where coho returns are expected to exceed the number of fish needed for hatchery production and upstream escapement.
On Monday (Oct. 23), the agency plans to plant 100 adult coho from Aberdeen Hatchery in Aberdeen Lake, which is open to anglers of all ages.
"We're trying to put some of the best and brightest coho back into the fishery," said Tim Flint, regional WDFW fisheries manager.
The daily limit for coho at both Cases Pond and Lake Aberdeen is five fish. No salmon catch record card is required.
WDFW already has released adult coho from Forks Creek Hatchery in the South Bend Mill Pond, another nearby juvenile-only fishing area, and has committed thousands more carcasses to local groups to plant in local rivers as part of a nutrient-enhancement program.
During the past month, the agency also has planted several other lakes with excess coho from other hatcheries. Horseshoe Lake in Kitsap County received 2,000 coho from the Minter Creek Hatchery near Purdy. Waughop Lake received 1,100 hatchery coho and De Coursey Pond 600 from the Voights Creek Hatchery in Pierce County.
WDFW has released excess hatchery coho into area ponds and lakes for several years, providing additional fishing opportunities for anglers of all ages.