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Memorandum of agreement between ODFW and the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde

After hearing several hours of testimony from members of Grand Ronde and other Tribes for and against, the Commission voted 4-3 to adopt a Memorandum of Agreement with the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde on August 4, 2023.  

The agreement is similar to agreements adopted with four other Tribes in western Oregon and advances the government-to-government relationship between the Tribe and the State of Oregon. Tribal members will be able to participate in subsistence and ceremonial hunting, fishing, shellfishing, and trapping licensed by Grand Ronde, within a limited geographic area, in partnership with ODFW and the Oregon State Police. Annual harvest limits and areas for harvest by tribal members would be set by mutual consent between the Tribe and ODFW. The state and the Tribe would also work as partners to develop and implement plans to protect, restore and enhance fish and wildlife populations and their habitats. 

News release


Shellfish agreement between the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde and the State of Oregon

On February 18, 2022, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde (Tribe) that allows enrolled Grand Ronde Tribal Members to harvest shellfish under a special gathering permit (rather than a recreational shellfish license) in the Trask Unit and the ocean adjacent to the unit including Tillamook Bay. Under the new agreement, Tribal members harvesting under the new permit would still follow Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations regarding species, daily bag limits, sizes, harvest methods and seasons.

“Shellfish have always been an important foundation for our lives as Tribal Members,” stated Grand Ronde Chairwoman Cheryle A. Kennedy.  “They appear in our traditional stories, nourish our bodies, adorn our regalia, and historically served as a currency for our dealings with other tribes. To be able to return to our fishing grounds and to harvest shellfish under a Tribal permit is something that will support us for generations to come.”

News release


Highlights from the 2023 ODFW and Tribal Partnership Annual Report

  • In August 2023, ODFW and the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon (CTGRO) signed a Memorandum of Agreement to establish a cooperative partnership to collaborate, share resources, and work as partners to develop and implement plans to protect, restore, and enhance fish and wildlife populations and their habitat. The MOA also established a framework for CTGRO members to participate in subsistence and ceremonial harvest of fish and wildlife resources, to be licensed and managed by tribal government in partnership with ODFW. 
  • In addition to previously mentioned MOA, ODFW and the CTGRCO established a subsistence and ceremonial hunting, fishing, trapping, and gathering plan in 2023. 
  • ODFW issued Ceremonial Harvest Permit and Ceremonial Harvest Tags to the CTGRCO authorizing the ceremonial harvest of up to 15 hatchery spring Chinook salmon or hatchery summer steelhead from a platform at Willamette Falls using traditional methods. Tribal members harvested 15 hatchery Chinook in 2023.
  • ODFW coordinates closely with the CTGRCO regarding the protection of archaeological resources on the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area. ODFW staff are currently working with the CTGRCO on a water pumping project to enhance wetland habitats on the Wildlife Area.
  • District wildlife staff met with CTGRCO biologists to review and discuss general hunting seasons and controlled hunt proposals involving the Trask WMU.
  • ODFW staff communicated with CTGRCO Natural Resources Program staff to discuss big game management issues, including coordinating enforcement actions with ODFW, Oregon State Police, and CTGRCO, and distributed big game tags for tribal use in the Trask WMU. ODFW again provided ceremonial big game harvest permits for use by Tribal members in the same area.
  • ODFW staff met with CTGRO and the Oregon State Police to discuss details of the newly signed MOA and the associated expansion of hunting and fishing rights in additional WMU’s. MOA tribal hunting and fishing licenses and tags will be valid in units 12 (Wilson), 14 (Trask), 15 (Willamette), 16 (Santiam), and 17 (Stott Mountain).
  • ODFW is working cooperatively with CTGRCO Natural Resources Program staff to collect biological samples (tail and wing) from forest grouse harvested on and adjacent to Tribal lands and is partnering with tribal biologists to collect CWD samples from harvested deer and elk. These cooperative sampling efforts support both ODFW species management and CTGRCO Fish and Wildlife Management Plan objectives.
  • ODFW staff provided guidance to CTGRCO staff on conflict resolution involving nuisance wildlife issues.
  • CTGRCO Natural Resources staff accompanied District wildlife staff while conducting field work deploying trail cameras as part of a pilot project investigating alternative blacktail deer monitoring techniques and maintains ongoing dialogue with them regarding big game monitoring techniques on tribal owned lands.
  • ODFW staff transferred possession of 2 elk antlers and approximately 35 lbs. of black-tailed deer antlers to the CTGRO for cultural and artistic uses.
  • ODFW provided approximately 1,090 spring Chinook salmon (10,449 pounds) from Clackamas, Cedar Creek, and South Santiam hatcheries, approximately 87 summer steelhead (4,352 pounds) from Clackamas Hatchery, and 599 fall Chinook (7,281 pounds) and 54 jack fall Chinook (211 pounds) and 6 adult coho salmon (45 pounds) from Salmon River Hatchery to the CTGRCO for Tribal subsistence and ceremonial use.
  • ODFW provided approximately 1,400 pounds of game meat from black bears killed due to damage issues in the South Willamette Watershed District.
  • ODFW provided funding toward habitat restoration work on CTGRCO’s Chahalpam property for plant establishment to promote floodplain forest restoration efforts.
  • ODFW coordinated with the CTGRCO and other fish management agencies on issues associated with implementation of the Willamette Project Biological Opinion.
  • ODFW Native Fish Investigations Program staff continued annual Oregon chub surveys and habitat monitoring at Chahalpam property. CTGRCO is working with ODFW, the USFWS, and other partners to develop a monitoring strategy for Oregon Chub after the completion of the post-delisting monitoring period, starting in 2024.
  • ODFW provided meat from 2 elk harvested from a public safety situation in the Mid Coast District.
  • Provided salmon forecasts and offered the opportunity to comment on development of fall Chinook and wild coho fisheries on the north coast.
  • ODFW coordinated with CTGRCO on an ODFW grant application to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to replace the disabled angling dock on the Tillamook River.

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