The Puget Sound spot shrimp fishery starts May 4, and is expected to lure thousands of anglers out on the local waterways.
State Fish and Wildlife voted in December on a Puget Sound shrimp policy that provides 70 percent of the catch share to sport anglers and 30 percent to nontribal commercial fishermen. In past years, the quota was split evenly between both parties.
The biggest jump is the San Juan Island, which is 32 days compared to six days last season. The Strait of Juan de Fuca will also see an increase from 15 percent to 22 percent this season.
Season dates are:
Hood Canal (Marine Area 12) will be open May 4, 8, 15, 18 and 22 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on each day. Discovery Bay (Area 6) will be open May 4, 8, 15, 18 and 22 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on each day.
Neah Bay east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh boundary line, Sekiu, Port Angeles (excluding Discovery Bay) and southern Puget Sound (Areas 4, 5, 6 and 13) will be open daily starting May 4 at 7 a.m.
The seasons will close when quota is achieved or Sept. 15, whichever comes first. The exception is southern Puget Sound, which closes May 31.
San Juan Island east and south sections (Area 7) will be open at 7 a.m. May 4, and then reopens May 8-11, May 15-18 and May 29-June 1.
The San Juan Island western section is open at 7 a.m. May 4, and then a Wednesday to Saturday schedule each week until June 7. Beginning June 1 the western area will be open Thursday to Saturday each week until the quota is achieved or Sept. 15, whichever comes first.
The eastern side of Whidbey Island, Saratoga Pass, and northern, central and south central Puget Sound (Areas 8-1, 8-2, 9, 10 and 11) will be open May 4 and May 8 only from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day.
More dates could be announced if the quota for that area isn’t achieved. For details, maps of areas and rules, go tohttp://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/shrimp/.
(Photo courtesy of The Seattle Times photo archive)