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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

May 30, 2012 at 12:48 PM

Columbia upriver spring chinook return less than half of preseason figure

Columbia River Spring Chinook Run Size Update

The U.S. v Oregon Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) met May 29 and downgraded the upriver run from 216,500 adults to 209,400 fish at the mouth of the Columbia River. TAC is scheduled to meet again Monday June 4.

The pre-season run size forecast was 314,200.

Through May 29, there have been 7,341 jacks counted at Bonneville Dam. Last year by the same date there were 47,928. The recent 10 year average is 19,450.

Sport Fishery Updates

Over 1,000 salmonid boats and nearly 1,700 bank anglers were counted on the lower Columbia below Bonneville last Saturday for the hatchery adult Chinook retention opener.

There were almost 11,000 salmonid angler trips for the two day opener!

Preliminary catch estimates for May 26 and may 27 fishery include 688 adults kept and 320 released (455 upriver mortalities). Best success was in the lower or upper areas (see attached file).

The lower Columbia River recreational fishery was open for Chinook retention through April 22. Final catch estimates for the period total 12,702 kept and 2,142 released adult fish from 105,145 angler trips. Kept and release mortalities of upriver Chinook is estimated at 9,787 fish.

Combined with incidental upriver mortalities associated with the ongoing steelhead fishery (50 fish), the combined upriver mortality estimate for recreational fisheries downstream of Bonneville Dam is currently 10,292 fish, or 88.6% of the current allocation.

Staff is not proposing any hearings at this time. Staff will continue to monitor the upriver run and request additional hearings as appropriate.

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