Monthly Archives: October 2017

Last Two Oregon Halibut Subareas Close to Fishing.

The Nearshore Central Oregon Coast and the Nearshore Southern Oregon subareas, the only Oregon halibut fisheries that haven’t yet met their quotas close by regulation Tuesday evening, October 31st.

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Surfperch Still Biting Well Along Local Beaches.

Gary Wolfer caught redtail surfperch to more than 14-inches on the the beach just south of the “Triangle” in Winchester Bay.

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WDFW News – Anglers Must Release All Salmon Except Hatchery Coho on Snohomish, Skykomish, Snoqualmie and Wallace Rivers.

Action: Release all salmon except for hatchery coho (marked with a clipped adipose fin) on the Snohomish, Skykomish, Snoqualmie and Wallace Rivers.

Effective dates: Sunday, Oct. 29, through Dec. 31, 2017.

Species affected: All salmon.

Locations:

Snohomish River, mouth confluence with Skykomish and Snoqualmie.
Skykomish River, mouth to confluence of North and South Forks.
Snoqualmie River, mouth to Snoqualmie Falls.
Wallace River, mouth to above hatchery water intake.
Reason for action: Spawning ground surveys, counts at the Sunset Falls trap, and Wallace Hatchery rack returns indicate that the run sizes of coho and pink salmon in the Snohomish watershed are well below pre-season forecasts. To protect future runs, spawning escapement goals must be met. Fisheries may be reopened if escapement goals are projected to be met.

Additional information: Gamefish and trout remain open as described in the 2017-18 Fishing Rules Pamphlet.

Information contact: WDFW, Mill Creek, Region 4 Office, (425) 775-1311.

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WDFW News – Sections of the Bogachiel and Calawah Rivers to Close to Fishing.

Action: Close sections of the Bogachiel and Calawah rivers to all fishing.

Effective date: Oct. 30, 2017 until further notice.

Species affected: All species.

Locations:

Bogachiel River, between Highway 101 and Wilson’s boat ramp.
Calawah River, downstream of the Highway 101 Bridge.
Reason for action: WDFW previously closed these river sections to salmon retention when low flows created difficult conditions for migrating salmon, impeding their movement upstream.

Harvest estimates to date have exceeded preseason expectations. WDFW is closing these river sections to all fishing to protect chinook that are now moving upriver into spawning areas.

Additional information: The Quileute Tribe is also closing their fisheries until further notice.

Information contact: Region 6 Office, David Low: (360) 249-4628.

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WDFW News – WDFW Approves Razor Clam Dig at Long Beach, Twin Harbors; Awaits Further Toxin Tests on 2 Beaches.

A razor clam dig in early November will go ahead as planned at Long Beach and Twin Harbors, but the status of two other ocean beaches tentatively scheduled to open depends on results from additional toxin testing.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has approved the Nov. 3-5 dig on evening tides at Long Beach and Twin Harbors after marine toxin tests showed that clams on those beaches are safe to eat. No digging will be allowed before noon.

Dan Ayres, WDFW coastal shellfish manager, said that test results at Mocrocks and Copalis meet state health standards, but the Washington Department of Health has asked for one more test to be sure. WDFW expects to announce the results of the testing early next week.

Tentative dig dates for Mocrocks and Copalis can be found on WDFW’s website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/razorclams/current.html

Ayres reminds people that they have a daily harvest limit of 15 razor clams and must keep the first 15 clams they dig. Each digger’s clams must be kept in a separate container.

The upcoming dig is approved on the following beaches, dates and evening low tides:

Nov. 3, Friday, 6:47 p.m.; -0.7 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors
Nov. 4, Saturday, 7:31 p.m.; -1.2 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors
Nov. 5, Sunday, 7:16 p.m.; -1.4 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors
All diggers age 15 or older must have an applicable 2017-18 fishing license to harvest razor clams on any beach. Licenses, ranging from a three-day razor clam license to an annual combination fishing license, are available on WDFW’s website at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov and from license vendors around the state.

WDFW has tentatively scheduled another dig for Dec. 1-4, pending results of future toxin tests.

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Wildlife-Vehicle Collisions Peak This Time of Year: Drivers May Not Salvage Roadkill Until 2019.

Several times already this year, an OSP trooper has arrived at the scene of a vehicle collision with a deer or elk and the driver has asked if the animal can be salvaged and taken home. ODFW offices are also getting such requests.

The answer is no, not yet. New rules allowing drivers to lawfully salvage roadstruck deer and elk don’t take effect until Jan. 1, 2019.

Calls and questions about the new roadkill law are increasing because wildlife-vehicle collisions peak this time of year. According to ODOT statistics, there were 1,160 such collisions in November of last year and 1,052 in October, compared to just 377 in December 2016.

That’s because deer and elk are on the move this time of year, due to their annual migrations that see them crossing major Oregon highways to get from higher elevation summer habitats to lower elevation winter habitats. Deer are also on the move due to their annual “rut” or breeding season which lasts from late October until mid-to-late November. Fewer daylight hours also contribute to higher incidences of collisions.

“Be extra careful driving this time of year, especially where there is a lot of vegetation next to a road, or when going around curves as wildlife near the road might not be visible,” said Oregon State Police Captain Bill Fugate. “Drivers who see an animal near the roadway should try to reduce their speed and be aware that other animals will often be crossing, too. Finally, if you can, stay in your lane because serious crashes involving wildlife are often due to drivers swerving to avoid hitting an animal.”

After any wildlife-vehicle collision, ODFW, OSP or ODOT attempt to salvage animals and will donate edible meat to a local food bank when possible.

With the passage of SB 372 by the 2017 Oregon State Legislature, drivers will also be able to salvage roadkilled deer and elk for the meat beginning Jan. 1, 2019. The Legislature gave ODFW time to develop a safe, responsible salvage program. As with all regulations, ODFW staff will write draft rules and present them to the Fish and Wildlife Commission for public comment and consideration before adoption.

“ODFW will work to write rules that make getting a permit to legitimately salvage a roadstruck deer or elk as simple as possible, but that also discourage poaching,” says Doug Cottam, ODFW Wildlife Division Administrator. Salvaging roadkill has been unlawful to discourage people from deliberately hitting a game animal with their vehicle in order to keep the meat or antlers, or from poaching an animal and covering it up by claiming it was roadkilled.

“OSP will continue to aggressively enforce wildlife laws once this new regulation takes effect on Jan. 1, 2019,” added OSP’s Fugate.

Until 2019, current Oregon wildlife regulations remain in place and state “No person shall possess or transport any game mammal or part thereof, which has been illegally killed, found or killed for humane reasons, except shed antlers, unless they have notified and received permission from personnel of the Oregon State Police or ODFW prior to transporting.” Even licensed hunters may not pick up roadkilled deer and elk during legal hunting seasons.

For more information about roadkill and what to do if your car hits a wild animal, visit ODFW’s webpage.

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WDFW News – Sections of the Bogachiel and Calawah Rivers to Close to Fishing.

Action: Close sections of the Bogachiel and Calawah rivers to all fishing.

Effective date: Oct. 30, 2017 until further notice.

Species affected: All species.

Locations:

Bogachiel River, between Highway 101 and Wilson’s boat ramp.
Calawah River, downstream of the Highway 101 Bridge.
Reason for action: WDFW previously closed these river sections to salmon retention when low flows created difficult conditions for migrating salmon, impeding their movement upstream.

Harvest estimates to date have exceeded preseason expectations. WDFW is closing these river sections to all fishing to protect chinook that are now moving upriver into spawning areas.

Additional information: The Quileute Tribe is also closing their fisheries until further notice.

Information contact: Region 6 Office, David Low: (360) 249-4628

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WDFW News – Night Fishing Will Be Allowed For Columbia Warmwater Fish.

Action: Night fishing will be allowed for warmwater fish species on a section of the Columbia River.

Effective Dates: Oct. 28 through Dec. 31, 2017

Species affected: Warmwater fish, including species such as bass, walleye and burbot.

Location: Mainstem Columbia River from Buoy 10 to the Old Hanford Townsite power lines.

Reason for action: The proposed modification will allow night angling for warmwater species, while retaining the closure for other fish species for the remainder of the year. This change is not expected to result in higher mortality of steelhead.

Information contact: Tim Sippel, 360-906-6752

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WSFW News – Anglers Can Retain Sturgeon Oct. 28 in the Columbia River.

ction: Opens a section of the lower Columbia River for retention of legal-size sturgeon for one day.

Effective date: Oct. 28, 2017

Species affected: White sturgeon

Locations: The mainstem Columbia River from the Wauna powerlines to Bonneville Dam.

Reason for action: There is available sturgeon on the guideline for a one-day harvest.

Other information: Sturgeon available for retention must measure 44-50 inches from the tip of their nose to the fork in their tail (caudal fin).

Information contact: Region 5, Olaf Langness; 360-696-6741

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Mardon Resort / Potholes Recreation Report

Those who braved the winds and rain of this past week experienced some great fall fishing on the Potholes Reservoir! With water temperatures falling to the low to mid 50’s, the walleye fishing is going strong. The Potholes Reservoir water level is currently at 1032.50 – up just over a foot from last week.
The walleye fishing has been very good with limits being reported. The face of the dunes, mid lake humps, and Lind Coulee continue to be the most productive spots. The walleye have moved a bit deeper and are now concentrated in the 20-30 foot depth range. Troll either a Slow Death hook, with or without a Smile Blade and half a crawler behind a 2 oz. bottom walker. Silver ½ oz. blade baits are doing well for walleye and bass as well.
Crappie and bluegill fishing continues to be very good both from the MarDon Dock and out on the main lake. Find the mid-lake humps and fish the tops and sides of them in 10-30 feet of water. Fish a 1-1/2”-2.0” Gulp Minnow on a 1/32nd or 1/16th oz. jig head. The MarDon dock is producing limits of crappie to 12 inches.
Bass fishing for both Largemouth and Smallmouth has been extremely good across the Reservoir. Top spots have been the face of the dam, Goose Island, and the face of the dunes. Fish football heads and hula grubs, crankbaits, Senkos, tubes and 3-5” grubs on a 3/8 oz. jig head.
The trout fishing is starting to pick up both on the Reservoir and in the Seep Lakes. Troll the Reservoir with Flicker Shads for both trout and walleye. Fish the seep lake with Rooster Tails and Power Bait floated off the bottom. Top lakes for trout have been Soda Lake and Long Lake. Check the regulation to be sure the lake you are planning on fishing is still in open season.
Duck hunters had a very good week with the windy weather. Join the Royal Booster Club for an opportunity to hunt pheasant on private donated land – and by doing so you will be supporting the Royal City School District’s extracurricular activities.

Two anglers show an impressive catch of trout taken from the mouth of the Potholes Canal in Soda Lake. The fish hit Rooster Tail spinners.

Steve Dorsey of Issaquah, WA with a nice Potholes Reservoir crappie!

>A great day of airboat hunting with limits of waterfowl! Left to right: Todd Eldred, his son Henry, Lilee, Mason, and Levi Meseberg. Mike Meseberg not pictured.

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