ROSEBURG, Ore. – Umpqua River system anglers should be aware of regulation changes in effect this year. The changes resulted from the Coastal Multi-Species Conservation and Management Plan<http://www.dfw.state.or.us/fish/CRP/coastal_multispecies.asp> (CMP) that was adopted by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission in June 2014.
Mainstem Umpqua River – Spring chinook salmon
• Season runs Feb. 1 – July 31 Previously, the mainstem was open year-round for chinook; now it is delineated by spring and fall runs and is closed the month of January.
• Harvest limit is two wild spring chinook/day and five for the season to protect South Umpqua River wild spring chinook. The new regulation allows more wild springers to escape the mainstem fishery on their way to the South Umpqua which is always closed to chinook angling. Additional hatchery spring chinook can be retained.
Mainstem Umpqua River – Fall chinook salmon
• Season runs Aug. 1 – Dec. 31.
• Harvest limit is two wild fall chinook/day and up to 20 total in combination with all other salmon or steelhead on an angler’s salmon tag. Fish harvested in the Umpqua system and other rivers, such as the Coos, are counted in the aggregate. All salmon/steelhead harvested must be recorded. If an angler records a hatchery fish on their salmon tag, it counts as part of the 20 salmon/steelhead per year limit. Anglers can purchase a hatchery harvest tag to record their hatchery harvest separately.
North Umpqua River – Spring chinook salmon
• Season runs Feb. 1 – July 31.
• Harvest limit is two wild spring chinook/day and up to 10 for the season in combination with wild chinook harvested in the mainstem Umpqua River. Example: harvest four wild springers on the mainstem Umpqua and six wild springers on the North Umpqua. Additional hatchery springers can be retained.
Other changes in the CMP include an increase in hatchery production for the South Umpqua winter steelhead program to a release of 150,000 smolts. ODFW should meet this production goal in 2016.
As lined out in the CMP, ODFW is working to establish a sliding scale for wild coho, fall and spring chinook salmon harvest. This year’s season was set as an “average” year; future seasons will be set according to forecasted returns.
The CMP also created more catch-and-release trout fishing areas in the Umpqua basin.
Harvest areas for two trout/day:
• Tributaries to the mainstem Umpqua River.
• Tributaries to the Smith River.
• North Umpqua River and tributaries above Slide Creek Dam.
The following areas, previously a two trout per day harvest, are now catch-and-release only:
• North Umpqua tributaries from mouth to Soda Springs Dam.
• South Umpqua mouth to Jackson Creek.
• South Umpqua tributaries below Jackson Creek.
• Cow Creek to Middle Creek.
• Cow Creek tributaries and mainstem Cow Creek above Middle Creek.
Anglers should always check the 2015 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for date and gear restrictions and the map for areas in red closed to all angling year-round.