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- Columbia River Reopens to Salmon Fishing.
- September 21st is National Hunting and Fishing Day.
- WDFW News – WDFW Schedules Controlled Burns in Two South Sound Wildlife Areas.
- Potholes Reservoir / Mardon Resort Recreation Report
- WDFW News – Salmon Fishing to Close in Willapa Bay (Marine Area 2.1) and all Tributaries.
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Monthly Archives: May 2014
From now through July 20, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is offering current freshwater or saltwater fishing license holders the opportunity to upgrade to a combination license for under $27.
The upgrade will give those anglers all the fishing privileges of a combination license at the cost they would have paid if they had purchased one in the first place, said Bill Joplin, WDFW licensing manager.
Freshwater fishing license holders can purchase an upgrade to a combination license for $26.75 and current saltwater fishing license holders can upgrade to a combination license for $26.20.
“With the abundance of opportunities this year we recognize that customers who purchased licenses early may now wish they would have started with a combination license,” said Joplin. “With plenty of clams, shrimp, and salmon now available, this is a particularly good time for freshwater anglers to upgrade their licenses and take advantage of all our coasts have to offer.”
By purchasing the upgrade, current freshwater license holders will gain access to saltwater fish, shellfish and seaweed.
Current saltwater license holders who upgrade to the combo license will gain access to fishing in lakes and rivers as summer draws near, as well as opportunities for shellfish and seaweed.
“Whether fishing from shore or boat, using spinning rods and bait, or casting fly lines, plentiful fish provide excellent reasons for saltwater anglers to upgrade and enjoy Washington’s lakes and streams,” said Chris Donley, WDFW inland fish program manager.
Here are a few of the exciting fishing opportunities available this year:
Salmon – 2014 is shaping up as the year for salmon, with a forecasted return of more than 1.6 million Columbia River chinook salmon returning this fall – which would be the largest since record keeping began in 1938. The ocean abundance of Columbia River coho salmon is also forecast to be about 964,000 fish – three times as many fish as last year’s actual abundance. And, summer and fall chinook salmon returns to Puget Sound are expected to total nearly 283,000 fish.
Razor Clams – Razor clam digs are listed through June 1, 2014. Additional digs are expected in the fall.
Trout and Kokanee – WDFW fish hatchery crews have stocked nearly 16.5 million trout and kokanee in lakes on both sides of the Cascades.
To purchase an upgrade online, visit WDFW’s licensing website at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/wa/license , check with your local license vendor, or call WDFW licensing at (360) 902-2464.
Dozens of Oregon rivers and streams open to trout fishing on Saturday, May 24. Check out the Zone reports for a river or stream near you.
Boat Inspectors Find Invasive Quagga Mussels On Pontoon Boat.
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife technicians discovered quagga mussels on a pontoon houseboat on May 20 at the Ontario boat inspection station in eastern Oregon. It is the first boat of the 2014 inspection season found to be infested with the invasive mussels.
The driver hauling the Texas watercraft bypassed the Ontario check station and was stopped by a Malheur County Sheriff.
Motorists hauling boats in Oregon are required to stop at boat inspection stations to have their watercraft inspected for aquatic invasive species under a 2011 law. Failure to stop at an inspection station could result in a $110 fine.
The boat had a large number of the juvenile-life stage quagga mussels on the hull and outboard motor. It was decontaminated at the inspection station with a high-pressure hot water cleaning.
“Boat inspections work, but people have to take their responsibility seriously,” said Rick Boatner, ODFW Invasive Species Coordinator. “If we are going to keep mussels out of the state, all boaters who use the state’s waters have to do their part.”
According to the Columbia Basin Bulletin, the Pacific Northwest, including Alaska and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Alberta, is the “only place on the continent” unaffected by the quagga and zebra mussel invasions that have devastated ecosystems and local economies. The U.S. Geological Survey has a quagga and zebra mussel distribution map on its website.
In addition to quagga and zebra mussels, inspectors are looking for aquatic plants and New Zealand mudsnails.
As long as the Umpqua River is not high and muddy, the smallmouth fishing has been excellent.
Nightcrawlers are an effective smallmouth bait, but small plastic worms, curly tail grubs, gitzits and senkos all work well.
Usually, the slower the rate of sink, the better.
The Umpqua River should continue to offer superb fishing for smallmouths through early October.
It looks like there is more heavy winds in store for this week’s second three day halibut opener.
Shad fishing is becoming more consistent, but there has been enough rain to keep the Umpqua River high enough so that low water hotspots such as Sawyers Rapids from fishing as well as they could.
Moss is taking a lot of the fun out of fishing for spring Chinook in the entire Umpqua River above Scottsburg. However, there has been a number of Chinook salmon caught in the last couple of weeks within a couple of miles of the Umpqua River Bar.
There is plenty of salmon forage inshore, but it hasn’t yet attracted many of the salmon that were way off shore a few weeks ago. Right now, the best salmon fishing is taking place along the northern California coast. Those salmon are moving steadily northward, but they will benefit the Brookings salmon fishery before they benefit our area.
Anglers that have been asking when those booklets will be available that cover the ocean salmon and halibut regulations. The answer is that the ODFW decided to stop printing them and to convey the information via single page flyers that are far cheaper to print and require less lead time. Here’s the flyer regarding the salmon regulations for the selective ocean coho salmon season.
Selective Coho (finclipped) season from Cape Falcon to OR/CA border – Open June 21st through the earlier of August 10th or when 80,000 quota for finclipped coho salmon is reached. Daily bag limit is two salmon and all retained coho salmon must be finclipped.
The Triangle/South Jetty area continues to fish very wellk for lingcod. Redtailed surfperch are biting aling area beaches, but several boats fishing the Umpqua River above Winchester Bay on Saturday afternoon all caught “pinkfins”. So the “famed” Umpqua surfperch run is on. Expect the fishing to be inconsistent for the next week, or so, but beyond that expect better fishing and plenty of company.
Smallmouth bass fishing on the Umpqua River is getting goog. When the river is high and murky, concentrate on areas out of the main current. But sightfishing for the smallies with smaller plastics is fun and effective when the river is relatively clear.
Largemouth bass fishing is still good on most area lakes, but the smaller nest-guarding males are starting to dominate the catch.
Many of the Florence-area lakes are receiving trout plants this week. Alder, Buck and Dune lakes are each receiving 425 legal rainbows and 36 trophy rainbows. Cleawox received 1,500 legal rainbows and Erhart and Perkins lakes each got 100. Siltcoos Lagoon received 36 trophy rainbows.
Freshwater Fish Records 2014 featuring world records as well as state records from all 50 states is now available on this website (peteheley.com).
The ODFW WILL NO LONGER PUBLISH the late spring booklets regarding halibut and ocean salmon fishing regulations.
Instead, the information will come out as single page flyers which are far less expensive to produce and require far less lead time to print.