OLYMPIA - Several eastern Washington lakes will have catch limits and other fishing regulations waived before closing to allow the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) to treat them with rotenone. The treatment will eliminate undesirable fish species and help restore declining trout populations.
The lakes are infested with illegally or inadvertently introduced fish species that are predators or compete with trout for space and food. Treatment of the lakes with rotenone, a natural chemical from a plant root, kills fish and allows for trout re-stocking at a later date.
All lakes to be treated for "rehabilitation" are listed below by county, with rule changes effective immediately.
North Potholes Reserve Ponds: No size/daily limit; closed Oct. 1 through the end of the season (normally closes Oct. 15); rehab treatment Oct. 1.
Upper and Lower Hamptons, Hen, Pillar, Snipe, Cattail, Shoveler, Gadwall, Lemna, Poacher, Hourglass, Sago and Widgeon lakes on the Columbia National Wildlife Refuge: No size/daily limit through Sept. 30; rehab treatment Oct. 11.
Fish Lake: No size/daily limit through Oct. 4; Closed Oct. 5 (normally closes Oct. 31); rehab treatment Oct. 6-7.
Silvernail Lake: No size/daily limit and juvenile-only restriction waived through Oct.17; rehab treatment late October. Closed Oct. 18 through Dec. 31 (normally open year-round for juveniles only).
Rat Lake: No selective gear rules, no size/daily limit through March 31, 2005; closed April 1 - May 31, 2005 (normally open Dec. 1 - March 31 under statewide rules and April 1 - Nov. 30 under catch-and-release and selective gear rules); rehab treatment Spring 2005.
Ellen Lake: No size/daily limit through Oct. 4; closed Oct. 5 through the end of the season (normally closes Oct. 31); rehab treatment Oct. 5.
Rocky Lake: No size/daily limit and no selective gear rules through Oct. 4; closed October 5 through the end of the season (normally closes Oct. 31); rehab treatment Oct. 5.