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States OK Columbia River Chinook, sturgeon seasons

Thursday April 12, 2018

CLACKAMAS, Ore. – Fishery managers from Oregon and Washington added a day to the lower Columbia River spring Chinook season and approved several recreational white sturgeon fisheries, including a 10-day season from the Wauna power lines to Buoy 10 at the river mouth.

The additional recreational spring Chinook fishing day will take place this Saturday, April 14. The open area is the Columbia River from Buoy 10 upstream to Beacon Rock, for both boat and bank angling, plus bank angling only from Beacon Rock upstream to the Bonneville Dam deadline.

The bag limit is two adult salmonids (Chinook, coho or steelhead) per day but only one may be a Chinook. Only adipose fin-clipped fish may be kept.

The additional spring Chinook fishing day was approved after a review of harvest and effort data that indicated anglers had achieved about half of their upriver spring Chinook harvest guideline during the initial lower Columbia River spring Chinook season, which concluded April 7.

The approved lower Columbia River recreational white sturgeon season will take place Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays from May 14 through June 4 from the Wauna power lines downstream to the river mouth at Buoy 10, including Youngs Bay and all adjacent Washington tributaries. On days open to white sturgeon retention, angling for sturgeon is prohibited after 2 p.m. The legal size slot for retained fish is 44-50 inches fork length. The bag limit is one legal-sized fish per day and the annual sturgeon limit is two per year. The retention of green sturgeon is prohibited.

Due to the decline of legal-size fish and other indicators during 2008-2012, retention fisheries downstream of Bonneville Dam were closed during 2014-2016. However, based on the increasing trend for legal-size white sturgeon in the lower Columbia River during that timeframe, both state fish and wildlife commissions approved limited sturgeon seasons in 2017, and again in 2018.

“This season represents a very conservative and cautious approach to restoring this fishery,” said Tucker Jones, manager of ODFW’s Ocean Salmon and Columbia River Program.

ODFW fishery managers said they were not prepared to recommend a white sturgeon fishery for the main stem Columbia River from Wauna powerlines upstream to Bonneville Dam and the lower Willamette River at this time, but will consider limited seasons later in the year.

The states also approved recreational white sturgeon fisheries in Bonneville and The Dalles pools for Friday, June 15. The legal size slot in Bonneville Pool is 38-54 inches fork length and 43-54 inches fork length in The Dalles Pool. The daily bag limit is one fish and the annual limit is two white sturgeon per angler. Angling is prohibited in designated sturgeon sanctuaries in both pools from May through July.

For more information, including regulation updates, visit ODFW’s online fishing reports at



John North (971) 673-6029
Rick Swart (971) 673-6038

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