The results through th 17th are at Columbia River Compact Fact Sheet . Preliminary results from Thursday/Friday might be available Monday. There should be an announcement in the next day or so about the next open date.
· The mainstem Columbia (mouth to Bonneville Dam) chinook sports catch estimate for
the period of Feb. 1 - March 16 was 692 fish kept and 164 released in 23,100 angler trips,
for an impact rate of 0.009%. The steelhead sports catch for the same period was 291
fish kept and 271 fish released."
This number seems high to me - I can't see more than half of their estimate being landed in that time frame. So our quota has already been reduced by that amount.
Read it again.....notice the part that says "SPORT FISHERY"?
that's right, SPORTS FISHERY. What this means is that they claim that the sports fishery has already taken 692 chinook and 291 steelhead. Those numbers seem exaggerated to me, and they go straight to the bottom line - the number of fish in the sport quota. What I see is a greatly exaggerated sport estimate, and a greatly reduced commercial estimate, but we should be used to it by now.
There isn't a quota, per se , for sport fishers. We are permitted to fish until we reach an impact level on ESA listed chinook or ESA listed steelhead. Theoretically, we could catch all the hatchery fish in the river without exceeding our impact if we never hooked and released any wild fish. We aren't likely to run into any problems with steelhead, but we could with listed chinooks. Our impact rate allowed for chinooks is 0.12%. 0.009% is our impact to date. That sounds like we have used 7.5% of our allowable impact. The original expectation was that our impact allowances would keep the sport fishery open through April. It looks like that might have been a conservative projection unless we start catching a whole lot of fish soon.
Those numbers do look a little high. :shrug: The effort has been solid over the last week, but catch has been below average. Guess I'll be fishing late in May with the way things are turning out this year. :smirk: