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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

July 30, 2013 at 9:01 AM

Lake Washington sockeye counts on downward trend

The Lake Washington sockeye single-day counts at The Ballard Locks are starting to wane.

The updated run size for Lake Washington sockeye is 176,071 sockeye through Sunday, July 29 and has surpassed the preseason forecasts of 96,866.  Those watching the run closely say the return will now end up between 180,000 and 190,000.

At this same time frame in 2006 the counts were 393,308, which was the last time a sport fishery was held in the large urban watershed.

Other single-day counts have looked like this since they began on June 12 it was 2,778; June 13, 2,424; June 14, 1,285; June 15, 2,430; June 16, 3,081; June 17, 3,603; June 18, 3,851; June 19, 4,638; June 20, 2,961; June 21, 3,296; June 22, 10,782; June 23, 12,936; June 24, 4,545; June 25, 6,021; June 26, 5,577; June 27, 4,641; June 28 5,314; June 29, 9,084; June 30, 9,182; July 1, 51,35; July 2, 5,194; July 3 5,185; July 4, 3,309; July 5, 3,257; July 6, 2,988; July 7, 6,543; July 8, 3,791; July 9, 4,532; July 10, 4,748; July 11, 4,130; July 12, 5,607; July 13, 4,191; July 14, 3,159; July 15, 2,112; July 16, 1,287; July 17, 1706; July 18, 697; July 19, 1,461; July 20, 1,311; July 21, 1,088; July 22, 826; July 23, 960; July 24, 1,269; July 25, 798; July 26, 988; July 27, 750; and July 28, 621.

Last summer’s return of 145,815 shattered the preseason forecast of 45,871, and more than 20-million fry were released into the lake earlier this spring.

Lowering the spawning escapement goal to somewhere around 200,000 is still being tossed around by state Fish and Wildlife and tribal fish managers, and no agreement has been made so far. The current spawning escapement goal is 350,000, which has been in place at least three or four decades.

Fishery managers would like to put something in place for the next few years such as a harvest rate approach, and there wasn’t just one proposal and one preference. It is still not too late to have a possible fishery, although the daily counts have started to drop off and is starting to look highly unlikely.

Just to compare, here are the cumulative totals of counting from past years:

2006: 247; 803; 1,217, 1,975; 2,606; 3,179; 4,656; 6,623; 9,660; 12,785; 16,162; 20,840; 24,030; 29,158; 33,407; 37,917; 44,168; 53,334; 60,808; 70,016; 75,996; 79,476; 81,368; 85,638; 89,605; 97,431; 109,226; 119,495; 129,342; 140,723; 159,262; 178,950; 195,131; 207,443; 223,821; 260,140; 275,077; 286,469; 296,857; 305,884; 326,390; 337,456; 352,647; 361,624; 371,534; 385,747; and 393,308 (453,543 was the final season total).

2007: 412; 892; 1,343; 2,058; 2,907; 3,467; 4,302; 6,595; 8,390; 9,795; 11,048; 13,013; 15,484; 17,604; 20,824; 22,692; 24,033; 26,148; 27,196; 27, 769; 29,180; 31,516; 33,236; 34,761; 37,117; 39,459; 40,160; 42,551; 43,348; 43,927; 44,617; 45,422; 46,132; 47,846; 49,321; 50,553; 52,054; 52,462; 53,159; 53,845; 54,382; 54,605; 54,830; 56,063; 57,602; 58,483; and 59,167 (69,271 was the final season total).

2008: 236; 570, 894; 1,411; 1,774; 2,173; 2,785; 3,653; 4,530; 5,437; 6,577; 8,439; 9,752; 11,068; 11,564; 13,558; 15,509; 16,781; 17,910; 19,012; 19,012; 20,275; 21,443; 22,810; 23,726; 24,223; 24,969; 25,568; 26,187; 27,073; 27,915; 28,479; 28,997; 29,651; 30,438; 30,877; 31,271; 31,582; 31,833; 32,111; 32,386; 32,616; 32,936; 33,181; 33,330; 33,428; 33,481; and 33,511 (33,702 was the final season total).

2009: 299; 825; 1,322; 1,797; 2,425; 2,880; 3,520; 3,931; 4,394; 5,064; 6,190; 7,057; 7,686; 8,156; 8,702; 9,414; 10,279; 11,296; 12,124; 12,933; 13,606; 14,306; 14,839; 15,494; 16,182; 16,735; 17,447; 17,945; 18,242; 18,434; 18,688; 18,845; 19,273; 19,734; 19,916; 20,250; 20,396; 20,562; 20,791; 20,976; 21,061; 21,148; 21,221; 21,347; 21,374; 21,450; and 21,456 (22,166 was the final season total).

2010: 625; 1,027; 1,673; 2,342; 3,296; 4,194; 5,531; 6,756; 8,119; 9,475; 12,679; 15,656; 18,094; 20,616; 22,433; 27,449; 32,012; 36,538; 40,00; 45,518; 48,535; 50,789; 57,555; 62,012; 72,169; 79,600; 82,425; 86,421; 89,801; 95,758; 100,530; 108,353; 117,220; 123,651; 128,835; 133,065; 135,684;  137,664; 140,127; 142,042; 143,647; 145,431; 147,148; 148,393; 149,602; 151,257; and 152,728 (161,417 was the final season total).

2011: 304; 563; 866; 1,218; 1,866; 2,512; 3,134; 3,452; 4,177; 5,319; 6,297; 7,221; 9,175; 11,011; 12,531; 13,794; 14,659; 14,969; 15,217; 15,612; 16,016; 16,913; 20,463; 23,824; 25,599; 26,596; 27,460; 29,131; 30,507; 31,354; 32,291; 33,404; 34,467; 35,235; 35,768; 36,209; 36,744; 37,362; 37,681; 38,705; 39,413; 39,850; 40,268; 40,552; 40,781; 41,076; and 41,480(43,724 was the final season total).

2012: 1,633; 2,320; 2,852; 5,035; 8,097; 9,821; 11,337; 13,577; 19,999; 23,546; 25,385; 27,628; 31,368; 37,191; 38,971; 42,701; 47,781; 50,565; 57,094; 59,036; 63,575; 69,340; 78,940; 85,072; 93,563; 99,661; 103,639; 109,974; 113,556; 118,918; 123,548; 125,150; 127,685; 128,896; 129,483; 130,565; 131,901; 133,267; 134,318; 135,087; 136,751; 137,719; 139,139; 139,946; 140,797; 141,414; and 142,062 (145,815 was the final season total).

Here are extrapolations through Wednesday, July 24 based on historical runs last seven years: 2006, 203,036; 2007, 206,139; 2008, 177,074; 2009, 181,138; 2010, 186,088; 2011, 185,596; and 2012, 180,722.

 

 

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