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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

July 31, 2011 at 10:58 AM

Columbia River northern pikeminnow reward fishery by the numbers

The northern pinkeminnow fishery in the Columbia River generates some big money for anglers who pursue their bounty during the summer time.

Through July 13, 45,957 pinkeminnow have been turned in and $284,838 have been paid to anglers.

There is a three-tiered payment with fish worth $4 apiece garnering $66,668 and 16,667 fish turned in; $5 apiece being paid $79,410 and 15,882 fish turned in; and $8 apeice being paid $106,800 for 13,350 fish turned in.

There have been 58 tags turned in on 58 fish worth $29,000, and 296 coupons worth $10 apeice generating $2,960.

The number of anglers in tier 1 ($4 fish) is 380; tier 2 ($5) is 64; and tier 3 ($8) is 31 for a total of 475.

Angler with 10 or less fish is 207, and anglers with two or less fish is 88.

Here is the current top-20 leader board: 1, David R. Vasilchuk, tier 1 with 100 fish, tier 2 with 300, and tier 3 with 2,515 with 10 tags, and total of 2,925 fish for a balance of $27,030; 2, Nikolay N. Zaremskiy, 100, 300, 1,702 with 1 tag and total of 2,103 fish for $16,026; 3, Thomas H. Papst, 100, 300, 1,606 with no tags and total of 2,006 fish for $14,758; 4, Matthew R. Tennison, 100, 299, 1,035 with 2 tags for total of 1,436 fish worth $11,185; 5, Ivan R. Vasilchuk, 100, 300, 951 with 6 tags for total of 1,357 fish worth $12,518.

6, Viktor M. Orlovskiy, 100, 300, 763 with 2 tags for total of 1,165 fish worth $9,014; 7, Daniel J. Geiger, 100, 299, 651 with 4 tags for a total of 1,054 fish worth $9,113; 8, Edward R. Williams, 100, 300, 550 with 1 tag for total of 951 fish worth $6,810; 9, Petr S. Lyubchik, 100, 300, 443 with no tags for total of 843 fish worth $5,454; 10, Oleg R. Vasilchuk, 100, 299, 352 with 1 tag for total of 752 fish worth $5,221.

11, Bryce A. Johanson, 99, 300, 288 with 1 tag for total of 688 fish worth $4,710; 12, John D. Snaza, 100, 300, 273 with 3 tags for total of 676 fish worth $5,584; 13, Robert W. Reeser, 100, 300, 249 with no tags for total of 649 fish worth $3,902; 14, Joe E. Tabor, 100, 299, 237 with 2 tags for total of 638 fish worth $4,801; 15, Bruce Oliver, 100, 300, 238 with no tags for total of 638 fish worth $3,814; 16, Bryan M. McCanna, 100, 300, 180 with no tags for total of 580 fish worth $3,350; 17, Ralph L. Fontana, 100, 300, 164 with no tags for total of 564 fish worth $3,222; 18, Russell R. McKee Sr., 100, 300, 163 with no tags for total of 563 fish worth $3,214; 19, Hollie Darden Jr., 100, 300, 141 with no tags for total of 541 fish worth $3,028; 20, Lewis D. Dexter, 100, 300, 139 with no tags for total of 539 fish worth $3,012.

Total of top-20 is 1,99, 5,996, 12,640 with 33 tags for total of 20,668 fish worth $155,766.

The harvest total from July 18-24 was 9,672 pikeminnow (11,546 the prior week) from 1,382 anglers (1,407 the prior week) for a catch average of 7.0 fish per angler (down from the prior week of 8.2) with six tags recovered (14 the prior week).

Year to date totals of 14,551 anglers with 81,913 fish, and catch average of 5.6 fish per rod with 100 tags recovered.

Northern pikeminnow, a large member of the minnow family, are known to eat millions of young salmon and steelhead, and other fish like bass, walleye and shad in the Columbia and Snake rivers each year.

Last year’s total catch was 173,981 fish on 25,271 angler trips.

There is a reward program through Sept. 30 that offers a bounty on fish measuring 9 inches or longer.

The more northern pikeminnow an angler catches, the more the fish are worth. The first 100 are worth $4 each; the next 300 are worth $5 each, and after 400 fish are caught and turned in, they are worth $8 each. As an added incentive, specially tagged fish are worth $500.

Only fish caught from the Columbia mouth to Priest Rapids Dam, and from the Snake mouth to Hells Canyon Dam are eligible.

There are 21 check stations along both rivers. Anglers must register each day before fishing.

Catches must be checked in at the station each day, and reward vouchers will be given. For details, call 800-858-9015 or visit the Pikeminnow Reward Program website.

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