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Sturgeon retention days added in Bonneville and The Dalles pools

March 2, 2022

CLACKAMAS, Ore.— Fishery managers from Washington and Oregon added additional white sturgeon retention days in Bonneville Pool and The Dalles Pool as catch rates slowed in February and harvest was lower than expected.

The new regulations are:
Bonneville Pool

  • Season: Wednesday, March 9 and Wednesday, March 16 (two additional days)
  • Area: Mainstem Columbia River from Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam, and all adjacent tributaries.
  • Legal size: 38-inch minimum and 54-inch maximum fork length

The Dalles Pool

  • Season: Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays March 2–30 (13 additional days)
  • Area: Mainstem Columbia River from The Dalles Dam to John Day Dam, and all adjacent tributaries.
  • Legal size: 43-inch minimum and 54-inch maximum fork length

Fishery managers had closed sturgeon retention fishing in Bonneville Pool in late January because catch projections indicated the harvest guideline was close to being met. It was later determined that the actual harvest was lower than expected so additional opportunity can be added without exceeding allowable catch.

Catch rates in The Dalles Pool slowed significantly in February and overall catch is well below original projections, so additional opportunity can be added. This is the second extension for the 2022 sturgeon fishery in The Dalles Pool.

Fishery managers will monitor catches closely and will take action as necessary to ensure these fisheries stay within harvest guidelines.

Sturgeon retention remains open per permanent regulations in the John Day Pool (from John Day Dam upstream to McNary Dam), seven days per week until the guideline is met. Catch rates remain low in the John Day Pool so no management action is needed at this time.

The daily bag limit for retention seasons is one legal-sized white sturgeon, with a statewide annual bag limit of two fish. Remember legal sizes differ between Bonneville Pool and other areas (see above).

Fork length is measured in a straight line from the tip of the nose to the fork in the caudal fin (tail) with the fish laying on its side on a flat surface, with the tape measure/ruler positioned flat under the fish.

Catch-and-release sturgeon angling remain opens all year, except angling for sturgeon is prohibited May 1 through Aug. 31 within the sanctuary areas designated below each of the dam tailraces.

For the latest Columbia River regulations always visit the Recreation Report Fishing Report at

As sturgeon and other Columbia River fisheries can close quickly when harvest guidelines are reached, anglers are also encouraged to sign up for Columbia River Action Notices to stay on top of fishery management actions. Sign up at




Jeff Whisler, (971) 673-6024,
Michelle Dennehy, (503) 931-2748,

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