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January 16, 2015
Contact: Ron Warren, (360) 902-2799

WDFW invites public to meeting
on Baker Lake sockeye salmon fishery

OLYMPIA - The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) will host a public meeting Jan. 31 in Mill Creek to discuss prospects for a Baker Lake sockeye salmon fishery.

The public meeting is scheduled for 10 a.m. at WDFW's Mill Creek office, 16018 Mill Creek Blvd.

Fishery managers will briefly summarize the 2014 Baker Lake sockeye fishery and give a presentation on hatchery operations. They also will share draft management proposals derived from ideas the public provided during a meeting last November, said Ron Warren, policy lead for WDFW's fish program.

"We received some good ideas from the public for a potential Baker Lake fishery," Warren said. "We're refining those ideas in preparation for the salmon season setting process, which starts in March, and want the public’s input on what we’ve developed so far."

State, tribal and federal fishery managers plan the Northwest's recreational and commercial salmon fisheries each year during a series of meetings in March and April. The process, which includes input from representatives of the recreational and commercial fishing industries, is known as the North of Falcon process.

Prior to Jan. 31, WDFW will post draft meeting materials online at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/salmon/sockeye/baker_river.html. The public is encouraged to provide comments at the meeting. Additional information about Baker Lake sockeye is available on the webpage. 

The Baker Lake sockeye fishery first opened in 2010 after a juvenile-collection facility was installed at upper Baker Dam and a hatchery was opened at the lake. In 2014, 13,788 sockeye were trapped below the lower Baker Dam and 6,819 fish were transported to the lake. The remaining sockeye were used for spawning.