fisheries managers have approved a measure to
allow some ocean salmon fishing, though it
will be slim indeed on the North Coast.
The National Marine Fisheries Service
adopted the emergency rule drafted recently by
the Pacific Fisheries Management Council,
which gives this area 20 days of fishing
during the spring an another six in the fall.
Anglers can keep two king salmon a day from
May 15 through July 4 and Sept. 1 through 6.
The minimum size is 24 inches.
The emergency rule was needed to dip below
the floor of 35,000 wild spawning salmon set
to protect fish stocks into the future. This
year, only 25,000 were projected to return. By
timing the fisheries in different zones up and
down the coast to avoid Klamath fish that mix
with fish from other rivers with stronger
stocks, fish managers believe that that floor
can be reset to 21,000 this year without
harming the population in the Klamath.
There will be no commercial salmon fishing
off Humboldt County. The nearest open zone is
in the Fort Bragg area, where fishermen will
be able to catch a total of 4,000 salmon from
Sept. 1 to 15. They can keep 30 fish over 27
inches long per day.
The regulations can be found at
http://www.nwr.noaa.gov. (see below
The year is being considered a disaster by
most on the North Coast, and legislators and
public officials have been seeking federal
relief for the closures. Closures and severe
limits on ocean fishing are occurring all
along the West Coast due to the weak Klamath
We are acutely aware of the impact this
rule has on fisherman and coastal communities,
but feel this is a necessary step to ensure
the long-term health of the salmon fishery,
said NMFS southwest region director Rod
McInnis My staff has been working on an
economic analysis to specifically quantify the
impact on the fishing season.