July 1, 2014
ENTERPRISE, Ore. – The Imnaha River will open for spring Chinook fishing on Saturday and Sunday, July 5-6, under temporary rules announced today by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.
The river will be open from the mouth to the Summit Creek Bridge (river mile 45) with a daily bag limit of two adult fin-clipped Chinook salmon and five fin-clipped jacks (jacks are salmon less than 24-inches long).
After July 6, the fishery will remain open for jacks with a daily limit of five fin-clipped fish. All adult Chinook must be released unharmed. The jack fishery will remain open until a closure is announced.
The short season is indicative of the low number of hatchery fish headed for the Imnaha River, said Jeff Yanke, ODFW fish biologist in Enterprise.
Last month Yanke said he delayed opening the Chinook fishery on the Imnaha with the expectation that the number of hatchery fish in the system would increase over time. It’s now clear that the hatchery fish are not coming, he said.
However, because the number of wild fish is on target to meet pre-season projections, the fishery can support a limited Chinook fishery. The fishery will be managed on a hatchery harvest of fewer than 100 fish, which still exceeds last year’s harvest limit of 83 fish.
“Even with the low hatchery return, there will be a Chinook season on the Imnaha, albeit a short one,” Yanke said. “I hope lots of anglers will be enjoying some salmon fishing over the holiday weekend.”
Jeff Yanke (541) 426-3279
Jessica Sall (503) 947-6023