SALEM, Ore.—The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission meets Friday, Aug. 7 at ODFW Headquarters in Salem (3406 Cherry Ave. NE) to set 2009-10 bird hunting regulations and 2010 Sport Fishing Regulations.
The meeting begins at 8 a.m. and proceeds through this agenda.
Game bird hunting seasons
The Commission will consider two changes to the 2009-2010 upland game bird regulations from previous years:
- Opening pheasant season one week earlier or the Saturday closest to Oct. 8 (this year, Oct. 10, 2009) to coincide with eastern Oregon chukar and quail opening.
- Increasing the number of fall turkey tags available in western Oregon from 3,000 to 4,000 and increasing the general fall season bag limit to 2 turkeys of either sex (daily bag limit of 1 turkey per day).
In addition, the Commission will adopt sage-grouse permit numbers, youth pheasant hunt dates, western Oregon fee pheasant dates, and special clinic dates for the 2009-2010 season.
The Commission will also consider the 2010-2015 Upland Game Bird Framework which will guide upland game bird season regulations for the next five years. In addition to incorporating the two changes proposed for the 2009-2010 season described above, the proposed framework includes the following changes:
- Pheasant season would close Dec. 31 (instead of Sunday nearest Dec. 11). Change would take effect beginning with the 2010-11 season.
- Mountain quail season would close Jan. 31 (concurrent with chukar and California quail seasons) and be open in Crook County after decades-long closure. Change would take effect for 2010-11 season.
- Forest grouse season in eastern Oregon would close Dec. 31 instead of the Sunday nearest Nov. 27. Change would take effect for 2010-11 season.
Migratory bird (waterfowl, dove, band-tailed pigeon, and snipe) hunting seasons are set through the Pacific Flyway Council, which includes wildlife managers from other state, federal and tribal agencies. Hunting seasons proposed by the Council have been approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s regulations committee and can now be finalized by the Commission. Under consideration are the 13th consecutive 107-day duck season and the following proposed bag limit changes for the 2009-10 season:
- Increase pintail bag limit to 2 (up from 1 per day last year)
- 1 canvasback in daily bag limit (no harvest allowed last year)
- Increase scaup bag limit from 2 to 3. The same 86-day scaup season offered last year would continue this year.
- Reduce dusky Canada goose quota from 165 to 90 due to long-term declines in population size.
- Bag limit of 2 white-fronted and 4 white geese (up from 1 white-fronted and 3 white geese last year) for Klamath County late-winter goose season, to help further reduce agricultural depredation by migratory geese.
All other seasons and bag limits are proposed to remain the same as last year.
2010 Sport Fishing Regulations
The Commission will be asked to consider and approve the 2010 Sport Fishing Regulations, which include a number of key changes from 2009:
- Statewide, the adoption of a two-pole endorsement would allow anglers to use two poles while fishing in most lakes, reservoirs and other standing water bodies in the state.
- In the Northwest Zone, proposed regulation changes would close portions of the Nehalem and North Fork Nehalem rivers to chinook salmon fishing in order to protect declining stocks.
- In the Willamette Zone, ODFW staff has recommended increased harvest opportunities for hatchery salmon in Eagle Creek and the McKenzie, Clackamas and Sandy rivers.
- In the Central Zone, the Commission will consider a 16-inch maximum length limit for brown trout harvested from East Lake. The proposed change is the result of a Fish Health Advisory that advises anglers to avoid eating large brown trout from East Lake due to high mercury levels.
- In the Northeast Zone, ODFW staff has proposed increased harvest opportunity of hatchery trout and steelhead in Big Sheep Creek, where a recent land swap has opened almost three miles of the creek to public access.
- In the Southeast Zone, regulation changes have been proposed for sections of the Sprague and Williamson rivers in response to major stream restoration projects.
The Commission also will consider adopting regulations that would allow albacore tuna fishing vessels to harvest anchovies to use as bait, and the harvest of bait fish from the Umpqua estuary.
The Commission will be briefed on ODFW staff’s recommendations for mitigating impacts to sage-grouse habitat in wind energy projects.
ODFW’s presentation about the results of its three cougar target areas (where cougars have been removed during the past three years to reduce conflict between cougars and humans, livestock and big game) has been postponed until the Oct. 2 Commission meeting in Salem.
The Commission is the policy-making body for fish and wildlife issues in the state. The seven-member panel meets monthly. Agenda item exhibits may be requested by calling the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.
Public testimony will be held Friday morning immediately following the expenditure report. Persons seeking to testify on issues not on the formal agenda may do so by making arrangements with the ODFW Director’s Office, at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting, by calling 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.
Reasonable accommodations will be provided as needed for individuals requesting assistive hearing devices, sign language interpreters or large-print materials. Individuals needing these types of accommodations may call the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044 at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.