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Fish MARINE RESOURCES
Commercial and recreational marine fisheries
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Port sampler interviewing returning anglers.

Welcome to the Ocean Salmon Management Program
(commercial troll salmon and ocean recreational salmon fisheries)

First time ocean salmon angler.

Recreational ocean salmon regulations:

 

State waters only fall Chinook terminal area seasons:

  • None scheduled for fall of 2021

Commercial troller waiting and watching.

Commercial ocean troll salmon regulations:

  • 2021 Commercial troll salmon seasons (time and area map) (PDF) updated 7/22/2021 (increase in the weekly landing and possession limit from Humbug Mt. to OR/CA Border to 20 Chinook)

  • 2021 Incidental troll Pacific Halibut: Retention of Pacific Halibut is allowed only for boats who have been issued a permit specifically for retention of incidental Pacific Halibut in the troll salmon fishery by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC). Permit applications were due to IPHC in mid-March.
    > Season dates: Open concurrent with ocean troll salmon seasons from April 1 through June 30, and after June 30 if quota remains and the season has been authorized by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and noticed on the NMFS hotline numbers 800-662-9825 or 800-526-6667
    > Landing limits: Vessels are allowed to land or possess on board a vessel no more that 1 Pacific Halibut for each 2 Chinook Salmon, except 1 Pacific Halibut may be landed or possessed without meeting the ratio requirement and no more than 35 Pacific Halibut may be landed per trip.
    > Minimum length: All retained Pacific Halibut must be no less than 32 inches in total length (head-on).
    > Quota: 44,899 lbs.

  • PFMC 2021 range of season alternatives adopted for public review (graphic representation PDF, updated 3/24/2021)


  • 2021 PFMC adopted ocean salmon regulations (in Preseason Report III) (updated 4/27/21)
  • Current year management action notices and updates

 

State waters only fall Chinook terminal area seasons:

  • None scheduled for fall of 2021

Oregon Managment Areas

Other regulation information:

 

Related links:

Two Chinook on top and one coho on bottom.

Catch and quota updates:

 

Updated through July 18, 2021 (pdf) - last updated July 21, 2021

Updated through July 25, 2021 (pdf) - last updated July 26, 2021

Recent management actions and updates:

 

June 22, 2021 ACTION NOTICE – Commercial Troll Salmon: NOAA Fisheries in consultation with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, the Pacific Fishery Management Council, and fishery representatives has taken the following in-season actions in the commercial troll salmon fishery:
ACTION TAKEN:

  • The landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) limit is increased to 20 Chinook per vessel per week in the commercial troll salmon season fishery from Humbug Mt. to the OR/CA Border for the remaining two open periods of July 22-28 and July 29-31.

RATIONALE:   Catches in the Humbug Mt. to OR/CA Border July quota fishery have lagged behind expectations.  Through the first three open periods of July 1-7, July 8-14, and July 15-21 a total of 77 Chinook had been landed.  This leaves a remainder on the quota of 139 Chinook.  By increasing the weekly landing and possession limit to 20 Chinook it will provide a better chance of approaching the quota.


Participating vessels in the Humbug Mt. to OR/CA Border are reminded of the mandatory reporting of landings within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing. Reports may be made by phone to (541)867-0300 ext. 252 or by email to kmzor.trollreport@state.or.us. Report should include the vessel name and documentation number, the number of Chinook salmon being landed, the port of landing, the name of the fish buyer to whom the fish are being sold, and the estimated time of delivery.

July 20, 2021 ACTION NOTICE - Commercial Troll Salmon: NOAA Fisheries in consultation with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, representatives from the commercial troll fishery, and the Pacific Fishery Management Council, has taken in-season actions with respect to the commercial troll salmon fishery from the US/Canada Border to Cape Falcon:

ACTION TAKEN:

  • Remaining Chinook quota from the May-June commercial troll salmon season North of Cape Falcon is rolled over to the July-September season on an impact-neutral basis. The July-September quota is increased from 15,375 to 16,931 Chinook salmon.

RATIONALE: A total of 9,818 Chinook were landed out of the May-June quota of 15,375 Chinook.   The remaining 5,557 Chinook from the May-June US/Canada Border to Cape Falcon troll salmon fishery were evaluated for potential rollover on an impact neutral basis to the July-September troll salmon fishery in the same area. Due to the distribution of the May-June catch, when modeled only 28% of the impacts could be added to the summer quota.  This resulted in a revised July-September Chinook quota of 16,931 fish.


Participating vessels are reminded of the mandatory reporting of landings within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing. Reports may be made by phone to (541)857-2546 or by email to nfalcon.trollreport@odfw.oregon.gov. Report should include the vessel name and documentation number, the number of Chinook salmon being landed, the port of landing, the name of the fish buyer to whom the fish are being sold, and the estimated time of delivery.

June 25, 2021 ACTION NOTICE – Commercial Troll Salmon: NOAA Fisheries in consultation with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, the Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, the Pacific Fishery Management Council, and fishery representatives has taken the following in-season actions in the commercial troll salmon fishery:


ACTIONS TAKEN:

  • The commercial troll salmon season fishery from Humbug Mt. to the OR/CA Border will reopen to fishing July 1 with the following changes:
    • The landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) limit is reduced to 10 Chinook per vessel per week.
    • The quota for July is increased from 200 to 216 Chinook with the rollover of remaining Chinook from the June quota season.
  • The incidental troll Pacific Halibut season will continue past the end of June (this is a required consultation and action by NOAA Fisheries each year).

RATIONALE:   Humbug Mt. to OR/CA Border July quota was increased by 16 Chinook on an impact neutral basis after an impact neutral rollover of the 24 Chinook remaining from the June quota of 300 Chinook.  The June quota season closed on June 16 in order to stay within the quota.  The revision to the weekly landing and possession limit for July is deemed necessary due to the very limited quota and anticipated vessel participation and catches.


Participating vessels in the Humbug Mt. to OR/CA Border are reminded of the mandatory reporting of landings within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing. Reports may be made by phone to (541)867-0300 ext. 252 or by email to kmzor.trollreport@state.or.us. Report should include the vessel name and documentation number, the number of Chinook salmon being landed, the port of landing, the name of the fish buyer to whom the fish are being sold, and the estimated time of delivery.

 

The incidental troll Pacific Halibut season each year must be authorized by NOAA Fisheries to continue past June 30.  As of June 23, an estimated 88.6% of the quota remained, and the season will continue as scheduled during open troll salmon seasons from July 1 through the earlier of the quota of 45,198 lbs. or October 31.

June 16, 2021 ACTION NOTICE – Commercial Troll Salmon: NOAA Fisheries in consultation with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, the Pacific Fishery Management Council, and fishery representatives has taken the following in-season action in the commercial troll salmon fishery in the area from Humbug Mt. to the Oregon/California Border:
ACTION TAKEN:

  • The commercial troll salmon season fishery from Humbug Mt. to the OR/CA Border closes to fishing at 11:59PM on Wednesday, June 16, 2021. 

RATIONALE:  June landings through Tuesday, June 15 are estimated to be 271 Chinook out of the quota of 300 Chinook, leaving no more than 29 Chinook remaining on the June quota.  The fishery is scheduled to reopen on July 1 on a quota of 200 Chinook for the month of July.  Fishery managers anticipate revisiting the July season in late June to adjust to quota for any rollover from remaining June quota or possibly a reduction to the July quota if the June quota was exceeded.  In addition, managers will be considering whether to reduce the weekly (Thursday through Wednesday) landing and possession limit from 20 to 10 Chinook per vessel.  This is anticipated to occur on a call scheduled for June 25.


Participating vessels are reminded of the mandatory reporting of landings within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing. Reports may be made by phone to (541)867-0300 ext. 252 or by email to kmzor.trollreport@state.or.us. Report should include the vessel name and documentation number, the number of Chinook salmon being landed, the port of landing, the name of the fish buyer to whom the fish are being sold, and the estimated time of delivery.

June 3, 2021 ACTION NOTICE - Commercial Troll Salmon: NOAA Fisheries in consultation with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, representatives from the commercial troll fishery, and the Pacific Fishery Management Council, has taken in-season actions with respect to the commercial troll salmon fishery from the US/Canada Border to Cape Falcon:
ACTION TAKEN:

  • The Chinook Salmon landing week (Thursday-Wednesday) limit in the area from Leadbetter Pt., Washington to Cape Falcon, Oregon is increased from 75 to 100 fish effective June 3.

RATIONALE: A total of 3,113 Chinook were landed out of the May-June quota of 15,375 Chinook.   In the Washington areas of Neah Bay and LaPush only 850 Chinook have been landed out of the cap of 5,680 Chinook.  In the Columbia River Ocean Salmon Management area only 22 Chinook have been landed out of the cap of 4,195 Chinook.  Both of these areas have been under weekly landing limits of 75 Chinook Salmon per vessel.  By increasing the limits to 100 in each area, there is a greater likelihood that the caps and the overall quota will be better accessed by the fishery.

Oregon participating vessels are reminded of the mandatory reporting of landings within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing. Reports may be made by phone to either (541)857-2546, (541)867-0300 ext. 271, or by email to nfalcon.trollreport@state.or.us. Reports should include the vessel name and documentation number, the number of Chinook salmon being landed, the port of landing, the name of the fish buyer to whom the fish are being sold, and the estimated time of delivery.

April 20, 2021 COMMERCIAL TROLL SALMON ACTION NOTICE: The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in consultation with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC), the State of Oregon, the State of Washington, and fishery representatives met today via conference call and have taken the following in-season management action related to the commercial troll salmon season from the US/Canada border to Cape Falcon:

ACTIONS TAKEN:

  • The commercial troll salmon fishery for all salmon except coho from the US/Canada Border to Cape Falcon will open for the period of May 1-15 as described in the 2020 season regulations.  This season will follow the same rules and specifications adopted by the PFMC on April 15 for the 2021 seasons.  This season will continue through the earlier of June 29; the May-June overall quota of 15,375 Chinook salmon; or the Leadbetter Pt., WA to Cape Falcon, OR May-June subarea quota of 4,195 Chinook salmon (see additional regulations below).
  • The minimum length for Chinook salmon beginning with the May 1, 2021 season opening from the US/Canada Border to Cape Falcon will be 27” total length (this length will apply in all open seasons in this area through May 15, 2022 unless modified by in-season action).

RATIONALE:  These actions will bring the adopted seasons from 2020 into compliance with the recently adopted seasons for 2021 which encompasses salmon seasons for the period of May 16, 2021 through May 15, 2020.  Additional regulations that apply to vessels fishing out of Oregon North of Cape Falcon that apply to the 2021 seasons include:

  • Vessels landing in Oregon are limited to only fishing between Leadbetter Pt., WA and Cape Falcon, OR.
  • Vessels landing into Oregon must possess a valid commercial license and a valid troll salmon permit.
  • Vessels landing into Oregon are limited to locations on the Oregon side of the Columbia River, the beaches at Gearhart/Seaside and Cannon Beach, or into Garibaldi.
  • Fishers may not possess Chinook salmon South of Cape Falcon, OR that are less than 28” total length, except that fishers may possess and land Chinook salmon that meet the minimum length of 27” total length on those dates when the troll salmon season has been closed South of Cape Falcon for 48 hours or more (those dates for the 2021 May through September seasons are anticipated to be May 8-9, May 24-25, June 3-4, June 10-11, June 17-18, June 24-25, July 1-4, July 10-11, July 17-18, July 24-25, July 31, August 7, August 13-14, and August 20-31).
  • Vessels fishing in the area between Leadbetter Pt., WA and Cape Falcon, OR are limited to no more than 75 Chinook per landing week (Thursday through Wednesday) from May 1 though June 29, and all salmon must be delivered during the landing week or they will also apply against the week in which they are possessed and delivered.
  • Vessels landing salmon in Oregon from any season North of Cape Falcon are required to notify ODFW within one hour of delivery or prior to transport away from the port of landing by either calling 541-857-2546 or sending notification via e-mail to nfalcon.trollreport@odfw.oregon.gov Notification shall include vessel name and number, number of salmon by species, port of landing and location of delivery, and estimated time of delivery.

4/16/2021 OCEAN SALMON ACTION NOTICE: The Pacific Fishery Management Council finalized their recommendations for 2021 ocean salmon seasons late in the evening on Thursday, April 15.  Copies of the adopted seasons will be available at the PMFC’s website in the near future (www.pcouncil.org) in PreSeason Report III, and graphics of the recreational and commercial troll seasons have already been made available on www.dfw.state.or.us/mrp/salmon/.  Seasons from May 16 on are not official until final approval by the Secretary of Commerce, and adopted by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission for waters within 3 nautical miles of shore.


Klamath River fall Chinook salmon was a severely constraining stock on seasons from Cape Falcon through California.  This year’s Columbia basin hatchery Coho salmon abundance is forecast to be one of the best since the late 1970s, and recreational coho quotas and seasons reflect this big increase.  North of Cape Falcon, Chinook quotas were most restricted by tule fall Chinook from the Columbia, while the most constraining stock of wild coho were from the Queets River along the North Washington Coast.


Recreational Season Summary:
Ocean waters off the Columbia River from Leadbetter Pt., Washington to Cape Falcon, Oregon will be open for recreational salmon fishing for all salmon except coho from June 19-26 with a one fish daily bag limit and a 22” minimum length.


The all salmon season North of Cape Falcon will open on June 27 and continue through the earlier of September 15 or quota with a hatchery mark selective coho quota of 42,400.  There is also a Chinook guideline in this area of 7,200.  The daily bag limit will be two salmon, but no more than one Chinook and all coho must have a healed adipose fin clip.  Minimum length for Chinook is 22” and the coho minimum length is 16”.


Recreational Chinook seasons on the central Oregon Coast from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. opened on March 15 and will continue through October 31.  The area from Humbug Mt. to the OR/CA Border open for recreational Chinook beginning on June 19 and continue through August 15.  The Chinook minimum length in all seasons from Cape Falcon to the OR/CA Border is 24”.


The hatchery mark selective coho salmon season from Cape Falcon to the OR/CA Border will be open from June 12 through the earlier of August 28 or the quota of 120,000 adipose fin-clipped coho. There will be also be a much more limited non-selective coho season from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. in September.  The September non-selective season will open on September 10, and be open each Friday, Saturday, and Sunday through the earlier of September 30 or the quota of 14,000 non-mark selective coho.  The open days in September may be adjusted in season.  Coho minimum length of 16”.   


All recreational anglers are limited to no more than 2 single point barbless hook per line when fishing for salmon, and for any species if a salmon is on board the vessel.


Commercial Troll Season Summary:
The commercial troll salmon seasons north of Cape Falcon will have limited Chinook quotas again this year.  The fishery will be managed by quotas, season length, and vessel landing week (Thurs.-Weds.) limits.  The early all salmon except coho season opens May 1 and will continue through the earlier of June 29 or the overall quota of 15,375 Chinook salmon, or the Leadbetter Pt. to Cape Falcon subarea cap of 4,195 Chinook.  The early season will have a 75 Chinook per vessel per landing week (Thurs-Wed) limit. 


The summer all salmon fishery north of Cape Falcon will open on July 1 and continue through the earlier of the overall Chinook quota of 15,375 Chinook or quota of 5,000 fin-clipped coho.  Landing week (Thurs-Wed) limit of 20 adipose fin-clipped coho per vessel.  Minimum lengths are 27” for Chinook, and 16” for coho.  Vessels must land in the area or into Garibaldi.  Mandatory call-in requirements within an hour of landing are in place for all troll salmon seasons in this area.  Vessels must call in to (541)857-2546 with vessel name, vessel number, number of harvested salmon by species, port of landing, destination of fish, and estimated time of delivery.  The mandatory report can also be made by email to nfalcon.trollreport@odfw.oregon.gov  Oregon vessels may only fish south of Leadbetter Pt., Washington.


NOTE:  Any boats fishing in the area North of Cape Falcon and retaining Chinook that are greater than 27” but less than 28” must land all salmon into ports N. of Cape Falcon.  Boats may only land Chinook in this size range into Garibaldi if the season S. of Cape Falcon has been closed more than 48 hours. 


In the area from Cape Falcon to the Heceta Bank Line (43o 58’ 00” N lat.), and from Humbug Mt. to the OR/CA border the first season is from March 20-April 30 for all salmon except coho. 


From Cape Falcon to the OR/CA border, the next openings for all salmon except coho will be May 1-5, May 10-21, and May 26-31.


From Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. the all salmon except coho season dates in June include June 5-7, June 12-14, June 19-21, and June 26-28.


From Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. for all salmon (all coho must be marked with a healed adipose fin-clip) the open dates include: July 5-7, July 12-14, July 19-21, July 26-28, August 1-4, August 8-10, and August 15-17.  During these openings in July and August, salmon trollers may retain up to 20 hatchery fin-clipped coho per week (Thurs. through Weds.).  Coho in possession must not exceed the number of Chinook in possession at any time.  There is an overall quota of 10,000 marked coho for this season.  If the coho quota is met prior to the last opening in August, then the season will continue for all salmon except coho for any remaining open days.


From September 1 through October 31 in the area from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. the season will be open for all salmon except coho.  Vessels are limited to no more than 75 Chinook per week (Thurs. through Weds.) during this season.


From Humbug Mt. to the OR/CA border, there are two quota seasons in June and July.  During these seasons all salmon must be landed into Port Orford, Gold Beach, or Brookings.  The June quota season will be open June 1 through the earlier of June 30 or a 300 Chinook quota with landing week (Thurs-Wed) limits of 20 Chinook per vessel.  The July quota season will be open July 1 through the earlier of July 31 or a 200 Chinook quota with landing week (Thurs-Wed) limits of 20 Chinook per vessel.  Unused quota from June may be transferred to the July quota period on an impact neutral basis.  Mandatory call-in requirements within an hour of landing are in place for all quota managed seasons. Vessels must call in to (541)857-2538 with vessel name, vessel number, number of harvested salmon by species, port of landing, destination, and estimated time of delivery.  The report may also be made by email to kmzor.trollreport@odfw.oregon.gov

Other Information:
Both commercial troll salmon fishermen and recreational anglers should review the full regulations prior to participating in the ocean salmon fisheries.  Single point barbless hooks are required in all ocean salmon seasons.  Commercial salmon trollers are reminded that they are restricted to no more than 4 spreads per wire for all seasons from Cape Falcon to the OR/CA border.

April 15, 2021 COMMERCIAL TROLL SALMON ACTION NOTICE: The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in consultation with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC), the State of Oregon, and the State of California met this morning via conference call and have taken the following in-season management action related to the commercial troll Chinook salmon seasons off Oregon for the period of May 1-15:


ACTIONS TAKEN:

  1. The commercial troll salmon fishery from Cape Falcon to the Heceta Bank management line (43o 58’ 00” N lat.). and from Humbug Mt. to the Oregon/California Border will continue open as scheduled through May 5, will be closed May 6-9, and will reopen May 10-15. 
  2. The commercial troll salmon from the Heceta Bank management line (43o 58’ 00” N lat.). to Humbug Mt. will be open May 1-5 and May 10-15 (closed May 6-9).   

RATIONALE:  Fishery managers and industry representatives are finalizing the ocean salmon season proposals at the PFMC meeting today.  Due to very limited allowances for Klamath River fall Chinook salmon, significant season cuts are being made in Oregon and California.  The closure from May 6-9 is one of many restrictions agreed to that will optimize access to the resource along industry recommendations.
Seasons from May 16, 2021 through early May 15, 2022, which are anticipated to be finalized tonight, and those seasons will still need approvals from NMFS, the Secretary of the Department of Commerce, and the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission.
The PFMC adopted season recommendations will be available at www.dfw.state.or.us/MRP/salmon/ by Friday, April 16. 

 

March 23, 2021: Notice of Public Hearings

The Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) will be holding a series of public hearings on the ocean salmon season alternatives that went out for review. The hearing will all be hosted on-line using the RingCentral platform. Follow the links below for how to connect, and how to fill out a comment card to testify at the meetings. These hearings are as follows:

The alternatives are available in PreSeason Report II which can be found here:  https://www.pcouncil.org/documents/2021/03/2021-preseason-report-ii.pdf/ 

The Oregon commercial troll and recreational alternatives are also available in a time/area graphic representation at:  https://www.dfw.state.or.us/mrp/salmon/Regulations/docs/2021_March__PFMC_Alternatives_Maps.pdf

March 11, 2021 COMMERCIAL TROLL SALMON ACTION NOTICE:

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in consultation with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC), the State of Oregon, and the State of California met Wednesday evening via conference call and have taken the following in-season management action related to the scheduled March and April commercial troll Chinook salmon openings off Oregon:

ACTIONS TAKEN:

  1. The commercial troll salmon fishery scheduled to open on March 15 in the areas from Cape Falcon to the Heceta Bank management line (43D 58’ 00” N lat.). and from Humbug Mt. to the Oregon/California Border will be delayed until March 20th (March 15-19 CLOSED).  The early season will be open for all salmon except coho from March 20 through April 30 with a 28” minimum total length for Chinook Salmon, no more than 4 spreads per wire, and single-point barbless hooks required.  Open dates in May, and for the remainder of the 2021 season, are still under development and will be defined at the April PFMC meeting and via further inseason action.

  2. The commercial troll salmon fishery scheduled to open on March 15 in the area from the Heceta Bank management line (43D 58’ 00” N lat.). to Humbug Mt. will NOT OPEN and will REMAIN CLOSED through April 30.   Open dates in May and for the remainder of the 2021 season are still under development and will be defined at the April PFMC meeting and via further inseason action.

  3. The incidental commercial troll Pacific Halibut season will open for 2021 effective April 1 for those areas open for commercial troll Chinook salmon for those vessels with an incidental troll halibut permit issued by the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) for the 2021 season. The Pacific Halibut regulations include a ratio limit of 1 halibut per each 2 Chinook plus 1 halibut outside of the ratio, a maximum of 35 halibut per trip, and a minimum head-on total length of 32 inches.

RATIONALE:  Fishery managers and industry representatives agreed that delaying the Chinook openings for Cape Falcon to the Heceta Bank management line (43o58’00” N lat.). and from Humbug Mt. to the Oregon/California Border until March 20 would give trollers needed time to prepare to participate in the fishery.  The closure from the Heceta Bank management line (43o58’00” N lat.). to Humbug Mt. was preferred by industry representatives as needed to help manage impacts on Klamath River fall Chinook in order to provide adequate opportunity as requested from fishery participants of the fishing seasons that are currently under development.
Seasons from May 16, 2021 through early May 15, 2022 are currently being developed (seasons prior to May 16 will be addressed through further inseason action). Season alternatives will be reviewed and a final season recommendation made at the Pacific Fishery Management Council public meeting April 6-9 and 12-15.  Interested members of the public should visit www.pcouncil.org for information on how to participate in the April meeting.

March 11, 2021 RECREATIONAL OCEAN SALMON ACTION NOTICE:


ACTION TAKEN (no action):  The planned ocean Chinook salmon season (all-salmon-except coho) will open as scheduled from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. from March 15 through May 15.  The bag limit will be two salmon, except closed to retention of coho, with minimum size limits of 24” for Chinook and 20” for steelhead.


RATIONALE:  The recreational ocean salmon fishery off Oregon in March, April, and early May typically has very low effort and Chinook catch.  Fishery managers and industry representatives agreed that this opening would not create any difficulty in developing the remainder of the ocean seasons for the 2021 fishing year.   Seasons from May 16, 2021 through early May 2022 are currently being developed. Season alternatives will be reviewed and a final season recommendation made at the Pacific Fishery Management Council public meeting April 6-9 and 12-15.  Interested members of the public should visit www.pcouncil.org for information on how to participate in the April meeting.

2021 PRE-SEASON PLANNING: OCEAN SALMON MEETING NOTICE:

The 2021 Ocean Salmon Industry Group meeting (OSIG) is scheduled for Thursday, February 25, 2021. This pre-season planning meeting will provide a review of the 2020 seasons, take a first look at the 2021 salmon forecasts, and develop a set of Oregon preferred recreational and commercial ocean salmon season concepts via public input to take forward through the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) regulation setting process. The OSIG meeting will be held virtually on-line this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic limitations (see details below).

Meeting Materials:

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 the 2021 ocean salmon seasons. Staff from ODFW will provide background materials and presentations and then work with meeting attendees to develop preferred season alternatives to use as guidance moving forward through the Pacific Fishery Management Council's season setting process. This on-line meeting is planned to start at 10:00 AM on Thursday, February 25. It is recommended that participants test their system prior to the meeting to iron out any technical problems they may have (option is available to call in by phone).  There will be a lunch break between 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM that will also give participants time to formulate concepts for proposals. Links to the agenda and briefing materials for the meeting will be posted at www.dfw.state.or.us/mrp/salmon/ 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 virtually to develop a set of season alternatives.  The final season setting meeting will occur in April 2-11 and will also be conducted in a virtual setting. Please visit the PFMC’s website at www.pcouncil.org for details. 

 

Topic: 2021 Ocean Salmon Industry Group Meeting

Time: Feb 25, 2021 10:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

 

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Project Overview

The Ocean Sampling Project (Ocean Salmon Management Program (OSMP)) monitors ocean commercial and recreational salmon fisheries for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW). The project collects and analyzes data from Oregon's commercial and recreational ocean salmon fisheries, including catch and fishing effort, recovers these and other sources to assist in the develop of management.

The Ocean Sampling Project is made up of two sub-units: The Commercial Troll Salmon Project (CTSP) and the Ocean Recreational Boat Survey (ORBS). ORBS collects the information needed to managed all ocean recreational fisheries, and the CTSP collects the information needed information for managing the ocean commercial troll salmon fishery.

ORBS makes estimates of the ocean recreational catch and effort by boat type (charter and private). Interviews are conducted randomly of ocean boats to generate estimates of catch for both salmon and non-salmon species. All sampled salmon are examined for the presence of a CWT. Additional biological data are collected from salmon and non-salmon species, and anglers are also interviewed regarding released fish species.

The Ocean Sampling Project is staffed by a project leader and an assistant project leader at Newport, and two sampling coordinators; one each at Tillamook and Charleston. The sampling coordinators serve as liaison between field samplers, fishery participants, and program staff at Newport; deliver data and coded wire tags to Newport; and also provide additional sampling when needed. We regularly sample fishery landings at all primary Oregon coastal ports, utilizing approximately 20 to 30 seasonal samplers.

 

The Ocean Salmon Management Program

The Ocean Salmon Management Program (OSMP) monitors ocean commercial and recreational salmon fisheries, and conducts ocean and coastal river's investigations for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW). The program uses data from these and other sources to develop management recommendations for the best use of Oregon's salmon resources, and to evaluate proposed ocean salmon fishery regulations.

The Ocean Sampling Project collects and analyzes data on Oregon's commercial ocean salmon fishery, including catch and fishing effort, recovers coded wire tags (CWTs), and gathers average weight data from commercial salmon landings.

The Ocean Sampling Project also conducts the Ocean Recreational Boat Survey (ORBS) to estimate effort and catch in the ocean recreational boat fishery. The ORBS estimates total ocean sport effort by boat type (charter and private), and interviews are conducted randomly of ocean boats to generate estimates of catch for both salmon and non-salmon species.  All sampled salmon are examined for the presence of a CWT.  Additional biological data are collected from salmon and non-salmon species, and anglers are also interviewed regarding released fish species and other specifics about their trip.

The OSMP sampling project is staffed by a project leader and an assistant project leader at Newport, and two sampling coordinators; one each at Tillamook and Charleston. The sampling coordinators serve as liaison between field samplers, fishery participants, and program staff at Newport; deliver data and coded wire tags to Newport; and also provide additional sampling when needed. We regularly sample fishery landings at all primary Oregon coastal ports, utilizing approximately 20 to 30 seasonal samplers.

OCEAN TROLL SALMON FISHERY

The commercial salmon troll fishery was developing off the Oregon Coast by the year 1912. By 1919, there were between one and two thousand boats trolling off the mouth of the Columbia River. The State of Oregon began recording troll landings separately from gillnet fisheries in 1925.

Landings of ocean troll caught coho salmon remained relatively stable from 1925 to 1941, with landings between 2,000,000 and 4,000,000 pounds (dressed weight: head-on, viscera removed) for most years. From 1942 to 1950 catches remained near 1,000,000 pounds annually, but by 1957 landings had climbed back up to 3,400,000 pounds. The El Niño of 1958-59 resulted in landings dropping back below 1,000,000 pounds or 200,000 fish. During the 1960s and early 1970s, improved hatchery production and rearing techniques, a growing troll fleet, and good ocean survival rates of smolts to adults resulted in record landings that peaked in 1976 with 1,800,000 coho landed. From the mid 1970s and continuing into the 1990s, Oregon's ocean coho fishery has been characterized by continuing poor ocean environmental conditions and poor overall survival, increasing management restrictions, and reduced ocean harvest opportunities. Most recently, ocean conditions have shown improvements, and changes in management approaches for coho salmon have began to provide modest increases in fishing opportunity for recreational anglers.

Although chinook harvest by the Oregon troll fishery has also seen dramatic fluctuations, the long term trend was one of increasing landings. The troll chinook fishery had record harvests in 1987 and 1988. The late 1980s and early 1990s have seen a decline in harvest due to decreases in many stocks, concern for critical natural stocks under both state and federal management and the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA), together with increasing allocation conflicts between river and ocean user groups. From 2006-10, there were major declines in first Klamath River fall Chinook and then Sacramento River fall Chinook that resulted in near complete closure of Chinook harvest in several years. By 2012, the situation had done a complete turn around with Sacramento Chinook back to average numbers and the Klamath coming in with a near record abundance.

Historically, coho salmon predominated in the landings, but since the mid-1980's Chinook landings have equaled coho, and in many years made up the majority of the catch. This is primarily due to lower coho survival rates and much higher chinook survival rates and catch in the late 1980s. The commercial troll fishery has not had any significant coho opportunity to the South of Cape Falcon since 1992, and Chinook will predominate in the landings unless coho populations recover substantially to allow directed coho fisheries to resume coast wide.

Entry into the troll fishery was unrestricted until 1980 when a permit moratorium was adopted. Although 4,311 vessels already had Oregon troll permits, a goal of 2,400 vessels licensed to troll for salmon in Oregon was established. At the request of the troll industry, the Legislature reduced the permit cap to 1,800 then to 1,200 and finally to 1,000. In 2012, the permit cap was eliminated, but no means to re-issue permits was provided. This will result in a continued slow decline in the number of permits in the fishery. In most recent years, approximately 40-60% of the issued permits have actually fished in any given season.

OCEAN RECREATIONAL SALMON FISHERY

Oregon's ocean recreational salmon fishery originated with boats fishing in the bays on stocks returning to freshwater in the fall. A few boats would venture out into the ocean on favorable days. The late 1940s and early 1950s marked the beginning of increasing effort by both the charter and private boat fleet in the ocean. Better and safer equipment plus the development of small boat basins and launching ramps and other support facilities in many coastal towns encouraged ocean fishing.

The primary targeted species of the Oregon recreational fleet has traditionally been coho salmon with chinook a distant second. The fishery has been sampled by ODFW's Ocean Salmon Management Program since the early 1960s. Ocean creel data was supplemented by salmon/steelhead tag license data through the 1980 season. An extensive statistical creel data collection program began in 1979, and that data has been the sole source since 1981.

The peak catch and effort year was 1976 when 538,400 angler trips resulted in a catch of 79,300 chinook and 501,300 coho. The daily bag limit in 1976 was 3 salmon and the season lasted from April 10 to December 31. In 1996, the seasons and catch quotas were very limited; and resulted in an ocean catch of only 11,210 chinook and 7,176 coho from 43,962 salmon angler trips.

Beginning in 1994, Oregon's ocean recreational fishery was limited to chinook salmon.  In 1998, the first selective hatchery coho (fin-clipped) fisheries were authorized off Oregon.  These selective fisheries have allowed limited, but successful, targeted coho salmon fisheries to resume. In 2011, small scale non-selective coho seasons were opened along the Central Coast in September. A result of strong recovery of the Oregon Coastal Natural (OCN) coho; this opportunity in September has proven to be an effective management option to target the abundant OCN coho while limiting fishery impacts on other coho populations of concern. These September seasons have also been very popular with the angling public.

 

Contact:

Eric Schindler - Project Leader
E-mail: Eric.D.Schindler@odfw.oregon.gov

Justine Kenyon-Benson - Assistant Project Leader
E-mail: Justine.Kenyon-Benson@odfw.oregon.gov

Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife
2040 SE Marine Science Drive
Newport, Oregon 97365
(541) 867-4741

 

Link to salmon identification guide

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