The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is keeping the health and well-being of all Washingtonians in mind as the state comes together in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. See Department of Health guidance and the statewide joint response website.
Closures and restrictions
Last updated: May 18, 2021
#RecreateResponsibly to protect yourself, others, and the outdoors. Review the guidelines below before heading out on your outdoor adventure!
English: Responsible recreation guidelines (PDF)
Español: Pautas para la recreación responsable (PDF)
Viêt: Hướng Dẫn Vui Chơi Giải Trí Có Trách Nhiệm (PDF)
русский: Руководство по ответственному отдых (PDF)
WDFW Offices, Hatcheries, & Outreach
- WDFW offices: Regional offices and the Olympia headquarters office remain closed to the public until further notice. Staff will not be available for walk-in services but are still on the clock, and available by telephone. If you need to pick up an item, they may still be available to assist you. For phone and email contact information, visit the Contact Us webpage.
- Hatcheries: WDFW fish hatcheries are closed to the public.
- Outreach: We are looking forward to attending and hosting in-person events again in the future. Please watch our web calendar for ways to connect with us.
Fishing & Shellfishing
- Fishing contests: All fishing contests and events must comply with any COVID-19-related gathering restrictions currently in place through the governor’s Healthy Washington - Roadmap to Recovery plan. If any portion of the fishing contest takes place on WDFW-owned or -managed lands, a Commercial Use Permit or Temporary Use Permit may be required. Please contact the regional lands agent to learn about any additional restrictions.
- Shellfishing seasons: People should check the recreational crab season webpage for a complete schedule by marine area.
- Puget Sound clam and mussel seasons: Please check the Shellfish Safety Map and our public clam, mussel and oyster beach page for open and closed areas. For razor clams, please visit our razor clam page.
Changes to animal sealing: When you harvest a bighorn sheep, black bear, bobcat, cougar, mountain goat, river otter, any other animal that requires sealing or pinning this season, you must schedule an inspection through a regional office or Olympia headquarters. In addition to scheduling your inspection, we ask that you practice physical distancing and wear a face covering to your inspection appointment.
- Hunter Education and Master Hunter Permit Program: WDFW is currently not able to hold Master Hunter Permit Program exams or in-person hunter education classes. Take hunter education online.
Wildlife Areas & Water Access Areas
- Facilities: Visitors, anglers, and hunters should only venture out well prepared. WDFW recommends that people bring their own hand washing supplies, toilet paper, and a face mask, and be prepared to change plans if sites appear congested.
- Report an issue: Please report any issues you experienced while visiting WDFW-managed wildlife areas or water access areas.
- WDFW's event calendar has updated information on commission meetings, advisory group meetings, and other public meetings.
- See the Center for Disease Control information for information on this disease and animal concerns. WDFW veterinarians and emergency response staff have been serving as a part of the response management team helping to inform necessary precautions regarding the COVID-19/coronavirus situation in Washington.
- Official information on COVID-19/Coronavirus in Washington from the Washington State Department of Health.
- COVID-19 Resources for the Commercial Seafood Industry from the Washington Sea Grant
- Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act fisheries assistance funding information from NOAA Fisheries
- Civil Rights protections during COVID-19 from the U.S. Department of Justice
- WDFW Employee Information