The ocean salmon season alternatives for ocean recreational and commercial troll salmon seasons were approved by the Pacific Fishery Management Council on Monday, March 13. The PFMC will now be accepting public comment on the alternatives through mail, email, and testimony at public hearings in Westport, WA; Coos Bay, OR; and Fort Bragg, CA. Details on the hearings and the April PFMC meeting in Sacramento, CA are available at www.pcouncil. org Alternatives in full or a series of summary graphics as they apply to waters off Oregon are available at these locations:
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in consultation with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC), the State of Oregon, the State of California, and fishery representatives met this morning in Vancouver, Washington and have taken the following in-season management action to the scheduled March and April commercial troll Chinook salmon openings off Oregon:
(1) The commercial troll salmon fishery scheduled to open on March 15 in the area from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. will remain closed to commercial troll salmon fishing for the period of March 15 through at least April 14.
(2) The commercial troll salmon fishery scheduled to open on March 15 in the area from Humbug Mt. to the Oregon/California Border will remain closed to commercial troll salmon fishing until further notice.
RATIONALE: Fishery managers and industry representatives agreed that this closure was needed to reduce impacts on Klamath River fall Chinook in order to provide more flexibility in other season options that are currently under development. The forecast abundance of Klamath River fall Chinook is extremely low, and most other Chinook salmon populations that contribute to fisheries South of Cape Falcon are forecast at poor to fair abundances.
Within the commercial troll salmon season alternatives which are still in development, there are two potential April 15 openings: (1) Cape Falcon to the Florence South Jetty, and (2) Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. These two early season alternatives are anticipated to be included with the season alternatives that will be considered early in the April PFMC meeting in Sacramento, California.
Seasons from May 1, 2017 through April 30, 2018 are currently being developed. Season alternatives will be reviewed and a final season recommendation made at the Pacific Fishery Management Council public meeting in Sacramento, California on April 6 through April 10.
The season for Chinook salmon in ocean waters from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. will open as scheduled for the period of March 15, 2017 through April 30, 2017. This season is open for all salmon except Coho Salmon, with a bag limit of two salmon per day, and minimum sizes of 24 inches total length for Chinook Salmon, and 20 inches total length for steelhead.
Anglers are restricted to no more than two single point barbless hooks when fishing for salmon, and when fishing for any other species if a salmon is on board the vessel.
Anglers fishing in ocean waters adjacent to Tillamook Bay between Twin Rocks and Pyramid Rock and within the 15 fathom depth contour are reminded that only adipose fin-clipped Chinook Salmon may be retained or on board while fishing prior to August 1.
Seasons from May 1, 2017 through April 30, 2018 are currently being developed. Season alternatives will be reviewed and a final season recommendation made at the Pacific Fishery Management Council public meeting in Sacramento, California from April 6 through April 10.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's 2017 Ocean Salmon Industry Group meeting (OSIG) is scheduled for Monday, February 27, 2017. This pre-season planning meeting will provide an early look at the 2017 salmon forecasts, and develop Oregon preferred recreational and commercial ocean salmon fishing concepts to take forward through the Pacific Fishery Management Council's (PFMC) regulation setting process. The OSIG meeting will be held at the Best Western - Agate Beach, 3019 N. Coast Hwy, Newport, Oregon.
The OSIG meeting is open to all ocean sport fishing anglers and charter operators, commercial salmon troll fishers, and any others interested in participating in the development of ocean salmon fishery regulations for the 2017 ocean salmon seasons. During the morning session staff from ODFW will provide background materials and presentations. Following a break for lunch, ODFW staff will work with meeting attendees to develop preferred season alternatives to take forward to the Pacific Fishery Management Council's season setting process. Doors open at 9:30 AM with the presentations scheduled to start at 10:00 AM and conclude by 3:30 PM. There will be a lunch break between approximately 12:00 PM and 1:15 PM. Links to the agenda and briefing materials for the meeting will be posted here as they come available in January and February.
The first of the two salmon season setting meetings by the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) will be held at the Hilton Vancouver Washington March 7-13 (301 W. Sixth Street, Vancouver, WA). The meeting in Vancouver will establish a range of alternatives for further review. The final season setting meeting will occur at the DoubleTree by Hilton, Sacramento, California April 6-12 (2001 Point West Way, Sacramento, CA). More information on these meetings can be found at the PFMC's website.
OSIG Attachments will be posted at the end of this notice as they come available in January and February. All information should be treated as preliminary, and readers should recognize that updated forecasts and information may be made available in future documents from the Pacific Fishery Management Council: