Sturgeon fishery opens June 3 in Priest Rapids, Wanapum reservoirs

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WDFW FISHING RULE CHANGE

Action: Allow harvest of sturgeon. 

Effective dates: One hour before official sunrise on June 3 through one hour after official sunset on Sept. 30, 2017.

Species affected: White sturgeon between 38 and 72 inches fork length. 

Location: Priest Rapids Reservoir (from Priest Rapids Dam to Wanapum Dam) and Wanapum Reservoir (from Wanapum Dam to Rock Island Dam). 

Reason for action: Hatchery-origin white sturgeon residing in Priest Rapids and Wanapum reservoirs since the early 2000s are abundant and have grown to a harvestable size. Removal of these hatchery-origin fish is consistent with ongoing actions to rebuild depressed populations of wild-origin white sturgeon in Priest Rapids and Wanapum reservoirs. 

Other information:

Daily limit of one (1) sturgeon between 38 and 72 inches fork length may be harvested from Priest Rapids and Wanapum reservoirs.

Annual limit of two (2) sturgeon between 38 and 72 inches fork length may be harvested from Priest Rapids and Wanapum reservoirs. Anglers are required to record sturgeon harvested from Priest Rapids (537) and Wanapum (539) reservoirs on a Catch Record Card.

Catch-and-release fishing is allowed in Priest Rapids and Wanapum reservoirs after the daily limit is harvested.

Any sturgeon not to be harvested must be released immediately. Oversized sturgeon cannot be removed totally or in part from the water.

Night closure is in effect for sturgeon. Official sunrise and sunset times can be found at:  http://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/docs/RS_OneDay.php  

Only one single-point barbless hook and bait is allowed while fishing for sturgeon.

Anglers may fish for sturgeon with two poles with the purchase of a Two-Pole Endorsement license.

In the field, eggs must be retained with intact carcass of fish from which they came.

All closed-water areas in and around Priest Rapids, Wanapum, and Rock Island dams are still in effect. Check the current sport fishing rules pamphlet for complete details (http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/).

Daily and annual limits, harvestable slot length limits, Catch Record Card recording requirements, and all other sport fishing rules governing sturgeon harvest in all other legally open fisheries still apply. 

Information Contact:  Chad Jackson, District Fish Biologist, (509) 754-4624 x250

 


 

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