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Commission adopts 2022 Big Game Regulations, hears update on Plan to reduce the risk of whale entanglement

Friday, September 17, 2021

SALEM, Ore.—The Fish and Wildlife Commission adopted 2022 Big Game Regulations during its meeting today with a modification to move the long-duration youth elk hunt start date from Aug. 1 to Aug. 15.

Archery elk regulations that moved Blue Mountains Units to controlled hunting in 2022 were already adopted in August. There is also a new Rocky Mountain bighorn hunt (556) as part of a rotation among the states of Oregon and Washington and the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. One California bighorn hunt (551) will no longer be available in response to pneumonia in the herd. Several new youth hunts were approved including for deer and spring bear.

The Commission also
Reviewed the development of the draft Conservation Plan (CP) to reduce the risk of marine life entanglement in Dungeness crab fishing gear. Over the past six years, ODFW has been actively working with industry and many other partners to address marine life entanglements in Oregon's crab and other marine fisheries. ODFW developed a proactive management strategy to reduce risk in the Oregon ocean commercial Dungeness crab fishery that is now documented in the draft CP, along with accountability, monitoring, adaptive management, and performance measures. The overarching vision of the plan is for the co-existence of a vibrant commercial crab fishery and recovering ESA-listed populations of humpback whales, blue whales and leatherback sea turtles in ocean waters off Oregon. The draft CP will be finalized and submitted to NOAA Fisheries this coming winter.

Heard an update on implementation of the Coastal Multi-Species Conservation and Management (CMP), which is the state's conservation and management plan for Chinook salmon, spring Chinook salmon, chum salmon, winter steelhead, summer steelhead, andcutthroat trout along the Oregon Coast from the Necanicum River to the ElkRiver. The plan focuses on the long-term conservation of naturally produced (i.e., wild) salmon, steelhead and trout, and provides the framework for howhatchery programs and fisheries will be managed.

Appointed three members to the Fish Screening Task Force.Judith Barkstedt, William Freeland, and DarinOlson were appointed to serve two-year terms on the Fish Screening Task Force. The Task Force advises ODFW staff on fishscreening program development, implementation, monitoring, technology, funding,and reporting.

Approved funding for several Access and Habitat projects that provide hunting access or improve wildlife habitat on private land.

Approved funding for a project recommended by the Oregon Conservation and Recreation Advisory Committee —a Green Jobs Training and Internship Program in partnership with Forest Park Conservancy and other natural resource organizations.

A recording of the meeting is available at ODFW's YouTube channel, https://www.youtube.com/user/IEODFW

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Contact: Meghan Dugan, (541) 464-2179; Meghan.C.Dugan@odfw.oregon.gov

 
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