May 5, 2014
GOLD BEACH, Ore. – A few proposed changes to current fishing regulations on the South Coast will be the topic of a public meeting the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is hosting on May 20 in Brookings.
Discussions will include ocean terminal area (bubble) fisheries and inland sport Chinook fisheries on the South Coast. Fishery managers are predicting generally good fishing prospect in 2014 due to continued good forecasts of Chinook salmon in many watersheds.
According to Todd Confer, ODFW fisheries biologist, the fall Chinook return on south coast rivers should be similar to the last few years. As a result, proposed 2014 regulations are generally unchanged form 2013 with several notable exceptions:
- An angling closure is proposed for the Winchuck River because the Chinook return is forecasted to trigger conservation status, as per the Rogue Fall Chinook Conservation Plan (adopted Jan. 2013).
- A bag limit of one wild Chinook per day, five per year (counting toward the aggregate of two per day/20 per year) is proposed for the Chetco River. This proposal would ensure adequate escapement of wild Chinook while encouraging harvest opportunity for hatchery Chinook.
- A gear restriction is proposed for the Chetco River that would limit angling to the use of bobber gear only Sept. 1 – Nov. 3. This proposed rule would allow angling opportunity during September and October, which has been closed in recent years. It also will address snagging that has been common during the low flow period in past years.
- The Chetco recreational ocean terminal area (bubble) fishery is proposed for Oct. 1-12 with a bag limit of two Chinook per day (counting toward the aggregate of two per day/20 per year) of which only one per day and five per season may be wild.
- The commercial ocean terminal area fishery is proposed for Oct. 12-31 or a quota of 600 Chinook.
Public feedback will be used by ODFW staff to develop recommendations for the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission. The ocean terminal area fisheries will be considered at the June 5-6 commission meeting. The inland fisheries regulations are schedule for the Aug. 1 commission meeting. Both meetings are in Salem.
The May 20 public meeting runs 7 p.m. – 8:45 p.m. at Southwestern Oregon Community College, 96082 Lone Ranch Parkway, Brookings.
The mission of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is to protect and enhance Oregon's fish and wildlife and their habitats for use and enjoyment by present and future generations. The agency consists of the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission, a commission-appointed director and a statewide staff of about 950 permanent employees. Headquartered in Salem, ODFW has regional offices in Clackamas and Roseburg with ten district offices located throughout the state. Visit www.dfw.state.or.us.