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Commission sets fall coastal salmon seasons, adopts hunting dog training rules
 
June 3, 2011

 

SALEM, Ore. – The Fish and Wildlife Commission today adopted the 2011 sport coho and chinook salmon seasons for coastal rivers and streams and approved new rules for competitive hunting dog trials and hunting dog and falcon training.

For 2011, managers are predicting improved fall chinook returns on most coastal rivers, except the north Coast where more restrictive bag limits will be in place.

The Nehalem, Tillamook ocean terminal area, Tillamook Bay and Rivers, Nestucca and Salmon rivers will have a bag limit of one adult wild chinook per day and 10 for the season in aggregate for these rivers.

The Siletz and Yaquina rivers will have a bag limit of two adult wild chinook per day and 10 for the season.

For most rivers from the Alsea south to the California border the daily and seasonal bag limits return to permanent bag limits of two adult wild chinook per day and 20 for the season. On the Elk and Sixes rivers the bag limit will be one wild fish per day and 10 for the season.

For the third year in a row, the Commission approved several wild coho fisheries in response to continued strong returns predicted by fishery managers. There will be 11 wild coho seasons on the Nehalem, Tillamook Bay, Nestucca, Siletz, Yaquina, Alsea, Siuslaw, Umpqua, Coos and Coquille rivers and Tenmile Lakes.

Because coastal coho are listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act, these fisheries must also be approved by NOAA fisheries.

For a complete description of the 2011 coastal salmon seasons, go the ODFW website at www.dfw.state.or.

The Commission also adopted revised rules to govern competitive hunting dog trials and hunting dog and falcon training during today’s meeting. The new rules don’t further restrict hunting dog training activities but:

  • Allow the release and take of domestically-raised game birds outside of normal hunting seasons for the sole purpose of training hunting dogs and raptors.
  • Clarify that releasing and taking domestically-raised game birds to train hunting dog and raptors is not allowed on ODFW wildlife areas, except in designated areas or by special rule.
  • Create a formal pursuit season for wild-born upland game birds from Sept. 1-Jan. 31.
  • Allow hunting dog training in game bird nesting habitat year-round as long as wildlife is not harassed.

In other business the Commission:

  • Adopted 2012 big game auction and raffle tags, which are unchanged from 2011. Sportsman/conservation groups have until June 24, 2011 to apply for sponsorship of an auction tag. Sponsoring groups keep 10 percent of the bid price. See the Auction Tag Sponsorship Application at the A&H Program website. (Raffle tags are not sponsored but all drawn at the annual Oregon Hunters Association Convention.)
  • Approved $661,350 in funding for eight Access and Habitat projects that provide public hunting access or improve wildlife habitat on private land.
  • Reappointed Steve McClelland of Cove to a second four-year term as Access and Habitat Program Board Chair.
  • Approved $1,505,875 for 16 enhancement projects and 10 restoration projects under the Fish Restoration and Enhancement program.
  • Appointed members to the Commercial Fishery Permit Board, which reviews contested case proceedings and proposed orders in cases where a commercial fishing permit has been denied or revoked.
  • Provided guidance on the Lower Columbia River White Sturgeon Conservation Plan, which is being developed in response to concerns about the long-term health of white sturgeon populations in the lower Columbia River.
  • Discussed proposed changes to the process by which the public can suggest changes to the state’s sport fishing regulations. The goal of a new plan is to simplify the process while allowing for more meaningful public participation. The Commission will adopt a final plan at its August 2011 meeting in Salem.

The Commission is the policy-making body for fish and wildlife issues in the state and usually meets monthly. The next meeting is Aug. 5 in Salem, again at ODFW Headquarters.

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Contact:

Richard Hargrave (503) 947-6020
Michelle Dennehy (503) 931-2748
Jessica Sall (503) 947-6023

 
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