Joint Staff Report Concerning the 2006 Fall In-River Commercial Harvest of Columbia River Fall Chinook Salmon, Summer Steelhead, Coho Salmon, Chum Salmon, and Sturgeon


This report describes fall fisheries in the mainstem Columbia River and includes summaries of 2005 fall fisheries, 2006 management guidelines, and expectations for 2006 fall fish runs and fisheries. It is part of an annual series of reports produced by the Joint Columbia River Management Staff of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) prior to each major Columbia River Compact hearing. Information concerning early and late fall mainstem management periods and fall Select Area fisheries are included in this report.

The first Compact hearing of the 2006 fall management period will begin at 10:00 am, Thursday July 27th at the River Street Building located at 25 River Street in Cathlamet, Washington. The purpose of this hearing is to review salmon, steelhead, and sturgeon stock status and consider non-Indian commercial fishing options for the mainstem Columbia River. At this hearing, the states will also consider Select Area fall salmon seasons in Youngs Bay, Tongue Point/South Channel, Blind Slough/Knappa Slough, and Deep River. Additionally, a Compact hearing will likely be scheduled in mid- to late August to consider non-Indian commercial fisheries and/or treaty Indian commercial fisheries in the mainstem Columbia River. Further Compact hearings will be scheduled throughout the fall management period as needed to evaluate salmon and steelhead stock status and adopt or modify treaty Indian and non-Indian commercial seasons as appropriate.

Salmon and summer steelhead returns are predicted prior to the fall season and are updated in-season based on the most current ocean and in-river fishery information plus Columbia River dam counts (Table 1). White sturgeon abundance in the lower Columbia River is updated annually. The Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) reviewed the data in this report prior to distribution. The TAC is comprised of biologists from state and federal fish management agencies and the Columbia River treaty Indian tribes, and functions by agreement of the parties under U. S. v Oregon.