Pete Heley Outdoors 10 / 05 / 2016

The Oregon Department of Agriculture and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife announced the closure of razor clamming and mussel harvesting along the entire Oregon coast, from the Columbia River to the California border. Recent shellfish samples taken indicate levels of the marine biotoxin domoic acid have risen above alert levels.

Coastal scallops are not affected by this closure when only the adductor muscle is eaten. The consumption of whole recreationally harvested scallops is not recommended. Crab, bay clams, and oysters are also not affected by the closure and are safe to eat. Commercial shellfish products remain safe for consumers.

Domoic acid is produced by algae and usually originate in the ocean. ODA will continue to test for shellfish toxins twice per month, as tides permit. Reopening of an area requires two consecutive tests in the safe range.

For more information, call ODA’s shellfish safety information hotline at (800) 448-2474, the Food Safety Program at (503) 986-4720, or visit the ODA shellfish closures Web page .

Crabbing continues to be very good at Winchester Bay and Charlston and the legal-sized male crabs have been full of meat. While crabbing is open all year in the lower reaches of Oregon’s coastal rivers, ocean crabbing closes at the end of the day on October 15th anf will not reopen until December 1st.

Regulations for the coho seasons on Siltcoos and Tahkenitch lakes were left out of this year’s regulation booklet.
The regs for both lakes are as follows: (1) Open for coho salmon from Oct. 1st through Dec. 31st; (2) One adult and one jack coho salmon may be harvested per day: (3) No more than 5 adult wild coho, in aggregate from Siltcoos, Tahkenitch and Tenmile lakes this season and (4) Closed to two rod angling for all species (along with Tenmile Lakes) during coho season.

The legal coho fishing areas for Siltcoos Lake lie above the Highway 101 Bridge on Siltcoos River and below the railroad trestle on Maple Creek Arm and below the Fivemile Road crossing on Fiddle Creek Arm. On Tahkenitch Lake, the legal coho fishing area is above the Highway 101 Bridge and below the first road crossing on Mallard Arm and the road crossing on Five Mile Arm.

As for coho fishing on Tenmile Lakes, fishing is not allowed on Tenmile Creek below the bridge on Hilltop Drive or in the channel or canal connecting North Tenmile and South Tenmile lakes.

Two rod fishing validations are good through December 31st with the following exceptions. (1) During coho seasons on Siltcoos, Tahkenitch and Tenmile lakes (Oct. 1st through Dec. 31st) and (2) from November 1st through Dec. 31st on Oregon coast rivers that started allowing 2-rod validations this year.

Idaho’s new catch and release fish record systen still has nine fish species with no record submissions. The catch and release records records are based strictly on fish length and the open records are for: bullhead catfish; lahontan cutthroat trout; flathead catfish; gerrard rainbow trout; golden trout; lake whitefish; splake (brook trout/mackinaw hybrid); tiger muskie (muskellunge/northern pike hybrid and tiger trout (brook trout/brown trout hybrid).

Steve Godin, who recently started a southern Oregon coast fishing club (Oregon Coast Anglers) has been working with the ODFW to ensure that “descenders” are available for free (donations accepted) at many southwest Oregon fishing tackle retailers. The descenders make deepwater releases of bottomfish easier and more efficient and they have already helped lift the restriction ahead of schedule on fishing for bottomfish in waters deeper than 20 fathoms (120 feet).

Kudos to the ODFW and to Steve Godin for helping to make these useful devices more available to bottomfish anglers.

Many of the shallow sand dunes lakes between Hauser and North Bend are providing their season’s best bass fishing. Their surface areas have shrunk to the point where their fish are more concentrated, but not so much that there are fish die offs. It’s also nice to hit these waters before the waterfowl hunters arrive in numbers.

About Pete Heley

Writes and self-publishes Oregon and Washington fishing books.
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