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Olympia, WA 98501-1091

Phone: 360-902-2267
Fax: 360-902-2448
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Miranda Wecker, Chair
Bradley Smith, Ph.D., Vice Chair

 

Commission Policy Documents

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POLICY DECISION

POLICY  TITLE:  Puget Sound Shrimp Fishery POLICY NUMBER:  POL-C3610  
Supersedes:  C-3610, effective 2-10-2003 Effective Date:  December 15, 2012
  C-3008, effective 1-4-1997 Termination Date:   
See Also: WAC 220-52-051 Approved by:  /s/ Miranda Wecker
      Chair, Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission

DOWNLOAD: Signed copy of POL-C3610 (PDF)

Purpose
The purpose of this policy is to provide the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (Department)  policy direction in meeting the dual mission of preserving, protecting, and enhancing fish and wildlife and their habitats while providing fish and wildlife related recreational and commercial opportunities as it relates to the Puget Sound shrimp resource.    

Definition and Intent
This policy provides guidance for state managed fisheries for spot shrimp (Pandalus platyceros), coonstripe shrimp (Pandalus hypsinotus), dock shrimp (Pandalus danae), and pink shrimp (Pandalus eous) in Washington State waters east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line (shrimp management regions 1-6 WAC 220-52-051). In establishing this policy for Puget Sound, the Fish and Wildlife Commission considered the state-wide harvest of shrimp from the perspective of meeting the needs of the consumer, the commercial harvesters, and the recreational fishers of Washington.

General Policy Statement
The Department shall promote a healthy and sustainable population of pandalid shrimp in Puget Sound and work cooperatively with the Tribal Co-Managers in structuring management measures to ensure a healthy and sustainable resource and achieves a fair sharing of the harvestable resource.

The Department shall provide an annual summary report and briefing to the Commission describing for each management region the performance and harvest of both commercial and recreational fisheries.

Policy Guidelines

  • Preserve, protect, and perpetuate Puget Sound pandalid shrimp resources and associated habitat.
  • Provide for shrimp trawl and shrimp pot fisheries in a manner that is consistent with resource conservation goals.
  • Allocate the harvest opportunity between state and treaty Indian fisheries consistent with applicable federal court orders.
  • Monitor all non-Indian recreational and commercial shrimp harvests for accurate catch accounting.
  • Manage Puget Sound shrimp fisheries conservatively until fishery impacts to localized populations and stock abundance are better understood.
  • Obtain biological and stock assessment information to improve the Department's understanding of the effectiveness of the current harvest management strategy and quotas.
  • Work with stakeholders to develop legislation that implements a voluntary program that allows for converting commercial trawl licenses to pot fishery licenses specific for the harvest of non-spot shrimp Pandalus hypsinotus and Pandalus danae.
  • Work with stakeholders to develop legislation that implements an industry-funded commercial pot fishery license buy-back program with an objective of reducing the number of licenses.
  • Pursue communication, education, and enforcement strategies to enhance compliance with regulations and reduce gear loss.
  • Provide easily accessible information to the public regarding recreational fishery rules including website information, and pages in the sport pamphlet devoted to information regarding the rules that govern this fishery.
  • It is the intent of the Commission that the provisions of this policy shall remain in place for a minimum of five years.

Regional Management Strategies for the Spot Shrimp Pot Fishery
The management intent is to provide for meaningful and stable recreational and commercial fisheries and to focus the commercial fishery in the areas that are less accessible to recreational fishers.

General Allocation Objective
The Puget Sound recreational spot shrimp fishery will be managed for an annual harvest allocation of 70% of the combined state spot shrimp quota for all management regions. The state commercial spot shrimp fishery shall be provided harvest opportunity for the remaining 30% of the state’s overall quota.

Regional Allocation Guidelines
Recreational fisheries will be designed to take a percentage of the state’s spot shrimp quota from each management region. To achieve the 70%-30% general allocation objective, regional recreational harvest percentages may deviate from those specified below. Commercial and recreational allocations in Regions 1 and 3 may be adjusted annually or in-season by equal percentage points as needed to ensure that the Puget Sound general allocation objective of 70%-30% is attained.

  • Region 1 - Managed to provide recreational and commercial and harvest opportunity.  The recreational fishery will be structured to harvest 80% of the state quota. The state commercial spot shrimp fishery shall be provided harvest opportunity for the remainder of the state quota.
  • Region 2 - Managed for the primary benefit of the recreational fishery. The recreational fishery will be structured to take 100% of the state’s quota. Commercial harvest openings can occur in Region 2 after the recreational season is completed, with a maximum harvest of 10% of the state quota.
  • Region 3 - Managed for the primary benefit of the commercial fishery.  The recreational fishery will be structured to harvest 22% of the state quota. The state shrimp fishery in the Discovery Bay shrimp district will be managed for the exclusive benefit of the recreational fishery. 
  • Region 4 - Managed for the primary benefit of the recreational fishery. The recreational fishery will be structured to take 100% of the state’s quota. Commercial harvest openings can occur in Region 4 after the recreational season is completed, with a maximum harvest of 10% of the state quota.
  • Region 5 - Managed for the primary benefit of the recreational fishery. The recreational fishery will be structured to take 100% of the State’s quota. Commercial harvest openings can occur in Region 5 after the recreational season is completed, with a maximum harvest of 5% of the state quota.
  • Region 6 - Managed for the primary benefit of the recreational fishery. The recreational fishery will be structured to take 100% of the State’s quota. Commercial harvest openings can occur in Region 6 after the recreational season is completed, with a maximum harvest of 10% of the state quota.

Management Strategy for the Non-Spot Shrimp Pot Fishery
The Puget Sound recreational non-spot shrimp pot fishery will be managed to take up to 20% of the state quota.  The commercial non-spot pot fishery will be provided the opportunity to harvest a minimum of 80% of the state quota.

Management Strategy for the Non-Spot Shrimp Trawl Fishery
The shrimp trawl fishery will be managed for the exclusive benefit of the commercial fishery and will be restricted to Regions 1 and 3. The trawl fishery will be designed and regulated to harvest non-spot pandalid shrimp only.