09/28/2016- John Snyder – Fishing The Columbia
2016 Columbia River Fishing Report:
WDFW Fishing Rule Change
WDFW extends sturgeon fishing, raises limit in Wanapum and Priest Rapids reservoirs
Action: Extend the harvest season for sturgeon
Effective Dates: Oct. 1 through Nov. 30, 2016
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: Harvestable surplus of hatchery-origin white sturgeon still remain in both reservoirs. Removal of these hatchery-origin fish is consistent with ongoing actions to rebuild depressed populations of wild-origin white sturgeon in Wanapum and Priest Rapids reservoirs.
- A daily limit of three (3) sturgeon between 38 and 72 inches fork length may be harvested from Wanapum and Priest Rapids reservoirs.
- Legal-size fish may be harvested whether or not they are marked by a fin clip, hole punch, or tag.
- Only one single-point barbless hook and bait is allowed per pole while fishing for sturgeon. However, anglers may fish with two poles with the purchase of a Two-Pole Endorsement license.
- Anglers are not required to record sturgeon harvested from Wanapum and Priest Rapids reservoirs on a Catch Record Card. Catch-and-release fishing is allowed in Wanapum and Priest Rapids reservoirs after the daily limit is harvested.
- Any sturgeon not to be harvested must be released immediately. Oversized sturgeon cannot be removed completely or in part from the water.
- There is no annual harvest limit for sturgeon between 38 and 72 inches fork length caught in the Wanapum and Priest Rapids reservoirs.
- Night fishing for sturgeon is prohibited. In the field, anglers must retain eggs with intact carcass of fish from which they came.
All closed-water areas in and around Wanapum, Priest Rapids, and Rock Island dams remain in effect. Check the current sport fishing rules pamphlet for complete details (http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/
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.