OLYMPIA – Starting Friday (Aug. 23) anglers in marine areas 1 (Ilwaco), 3 (LaPush) and 4 (Neah Bay) can keep up to two chinook salmon as part of their two-salmon daily limit.
With that change, anglers will be allowed to keep two chinook per day in all four ocean marine areas. Those fishing in marine areas 3 and 4 are also allowed two bonus pink salmon in addition to their two-salmon daily limit. All wild coho must be released in marine areas 1-4.
Anglers fishing off Westport (Marine Area 2) have been allowed to keep two chinook salmon as part of their two-salmon daily limit since Aug. 4.
Doug Milward, ocean salmon manager for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), said the department has managed conservatively to stay within the ocean quota for chinook.
“We saw good catch rates for chinook in the ocean from the outset of the season, so we have been conservative with the catch limit,” said Milward. “That has put us in a good position where enough of the ocean quota remains to allow anglers two chinook per day in the four ocean marine areas through the end of the season."
Through Aug. 18, anglers coastwide had caught 57.6% (23,029 chinook) of the 40,000 chinook quota. As for coho, anglers had caught 47.4% (35,422 coho) of the 74,760 coho quota.
Ocean salmon fisheries are currently scheduled to continue through Sept. 30 in marine areas 1 and 2 and through Sept. 22 in marine areas 3 and 4.
Fishery managers will continue to monitor the ocean salmon fishery throughout the season, and announce any other changes on WDFW’s website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/.
Additional information on the ocean fishery, including minimum size limits, is available in WDFW’s Fishing in Washington rules pamphlet, available at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/.