Anglers may continue to harvest adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon.
CENTRAL POINT, Ore – Retention of wild spring chinook on the Rogue River, set to open June 1, will remain closed to protect wild fish stocks, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife biologists announced today.
The Rogue River from the mouth upstream to Elephant Rock at river mile 3.0 is closed to the harvest of non-adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon June 1 through July 11. Beginning July 12 non-adipose fin-clipped chinook may be retained, with a bag limit of 2 adult salmon or steelhead per day, 20 per year, of which only 10 may be non-adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon.
The Rogue River from the Elephant Rock upstream to Cole Rivers Hatchery Diversion Dam is closed to the harvest of non-adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon June 1 through July 31.
This emergency closure is needed to reduce angling impacts on wild spring chinook salmon. Similar emergency closures were enacted in the previous two years.
Wild spring chinook over Gold Ray Dam number only in the hundreds so far this year and biologists do not believe counts will meet the conservation criteria adopted in the Rogue Spring Chinook Conservation Plan. The plan calls for a minimum return of 3,500 wild spring chinook in any given year and a three year average of 5,000.
As of May 15, the chinook run at Gold Ray Dam is just 24 percent of the recent 10-year average at 1,161 fish and is projected to be similar in size to the 2006 and 2007 runs, the second and third lowest recorded since counts began in 1942. Last year, just 3,465 wild spring chinook migrated past Gold Ray Dam.
In addition to this temporary rule on wild spring chinook, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Comission will consider harvest restrictions on coastal fall Chinook due to conservation issues with the populations. The commission meets in Salem on June 6, and proposed regulations would be in effect August 1 to December 31.
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 approximately 950 permanent employees. Headquartered in Salem, ODFW has regional offices in Clackamas, Roseburg, Bend, and La Grande with ten district offices located throughout the state. For additional information, please visit www.dfw.state.or.us.