Angler abuse on the Skagit?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by KerryS, Jul 3, 2012.

  1. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    "Reasons for action: The gear restriction will reduce incidental hooking mortality of chinook salmon listed for protection under the Endangered Species Act. Anglers are abusing the gamefish rules and specifically targeting chinook salmon, leading to increased mortality."

    No way!
    Beavcoon and James W. like this.
  2. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

    Washington Fish and game always seem to have their heads up their asses
  3. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    Apparently you have not seen how some of the "good 'ol boyz" do their fishin' on the Skagit. In this case knowing a little about how fishin' is done on the Skagit I tend to believe WDFW has it correct. As much as it pains me to say so.
  4. Plecoptera

    Plecoptera Active Member

    Glad to see it done, but a gear restriction will only works for law abiding anglers. Guys targeting ESA kings don't really care for rules will probably continue using whatever they want. The Sockeye fishery on the Fraser is way worse. Guys up there kill anything that comes ashore, kings, silvers, steelhead, cutts, you name it.

    Maybe they should impose the selective gear rule during Humpy season... That ought to go over real well.
  5. troutpounder

    troutpounder Active Member

    The only way gear restrictions work is if they have fish and game enforcing the rules. I have been out 15 times since the rivers opened and a bunch of lakes and the yak earlier this year and have only seen fish and game once and they were just driving by.
  6. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    Shit, that's a lot! I've been fishing WA almost my entire life, and only had my license checked once.
  7. troutpounder

    troutpounder Active Member

    ohhhh I never said I had it check I have just seen them drive by once. I also have never had my fishing license checked, and only once while hunting
  8. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    Obviously WDFW knows what is taking place on the Skagit. Below is the complete rule change notice sent out this morning by WDFW. That is this morning as in today. This means they are looking for ways to stop the targeting of Chinook in the Skagit. Maybe they are actually thinking this thru to the point of having enforcement on the river to make sure the rules are being followed. I could be wrong.

    Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
    600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

    July 2, 2012

    Gear restrictions implemented on the Skagit River

    Action: Selective gear rules, with a maximum hook gap of ½ inch required.

    Species affected: All species of fish.

    Location and effective Dates:

    • The Skagit River from the mouth to the Highway 536 Bridge at Mt Vernon (Memorial Highway Bridge), July 5 through August 31.
    • The Skagit River from the Highway 536 Bridge to Gilligan Creek, July 16 through August 31.
    • The Skagit River from Gilligan Creek to The Dalles Bridge at Concrete, July 5 through Sept 15.
    • The Skagit River from the Dalles Bridge at Concrete to the Highway 530 Bridge at Rockport, July 5 through Sept 15.
    • The Skagit River from Highway 530 Bridge to Cascade River Road (Marblemount Bridge), July 16 through Sept 15.

    Reasons for action: The gear restriction will reduce incidental hooking mortality of chinook salmon listed for protection under the Endangered Species Act. Anglers are abusing the gamefish rules and specifically targeting chinook salmon, leading to increased mortality.

    Other information: Fishing rules will revert back to seasons as listed in the Sport fishing Rules 2012/2013 pamphlet edition, FISHING IN WASHINGTON after the listed end date of the emergency rule change.

    Information Contact: Brett Barkdull, 360-466-4345 x 270, .

    Fishers must have a current Washington fishing license, appropriate to the fishery. Check the WDFW "Fishing in Washington" rules pamphlet for details on fishing seasons and regulations. Fishing rules are subject to change. Check the WDFW Fishing hotline for the latest rule information at (360) 902-2500, press 2 for recreational rules. For the Shellfish Rule Change hotline call (360)796-3215 or toll free 1-866-880-5431."
  9. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    I love when you guys start talking about the lack of enforcement because you have never been checked or perhaps only once in the last upteen years. Come on. Do you think they may size you up and based on, lets say experience, think you are not likely breaking any laws so you may not be worth the time to check? That time might be put to better use checking those that actually look like they may be breaking the law. Just sayin'.
    Blake Harmon likes this.
  10. troutpounder

    troutpounder Active Member

    perhaps, but they still need a presence on the river and only having seen one driving around this year is not a good deterrent to people that may be breaking the rules...

    side note is I did not turn on bold lettering for that last part and it would not turn off...... weird
  11. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

    So that I'm sure I understand this, the change means no bait and no barbs and a limit on hook size. The downside being that "typical" sockeye gear includes a barbed hook and a piece of prawn or shrimp on the hook?

  12. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

    I've been checked many time. I've had game wardens park and hike to where I was fishing at just to see if I had a license. What come to mind is that hole above the Bolder river. Where you drive back in the woods and then hike down a trail to the river. Was checked there twice.

    It was that good looking warden.
  13. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    Seen one driving around where? In an area that is known to have a high occurrence of poaching or other crimes against wildlife?

    Here I am defending WDFW. WTF? I also hate it when you guys make stupid ass statements that I can’t seem to leave alone. Fuck me.
    Old Man likes this.
  14. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

    You happen to bite on things also. I also hate stupid things too. I think you can understand what I said. It's hot here and the heat takes all my strength away. Sometimes I don't even know what I'm doing.
  15. troutpounder

    troutpounder Active Member

  16. Olive bugger

    Olive bugger Active Member

    Passing laws and setting rules from an office is a pretty easy thing to do.

    Enforcement, on the other hand, is expensive and requires manpower. Enforcement is not a pleasant thing. In some cases, enforcement can be downright dangerous.

    Given the current state of finances in the State and in the Country, I find it hard to believe that there will be any expenditures of size to support these rules. I hope that I am incorrect, but the numbers are just not there for me.

    Our courts are overburdened now, with lawbreakers of a more violent and troublesome nature. I can not see the addition of a few miscreant fishers getting much attention.

    Perhaps the bold print in the WDFW statement is the giveaway. If they make the threat, then decent and law abiding fishers will not violate it, and we can all feel good about that and go home to a warm fire and cold beer. The few fish that fall prey to the unscrupulous will not bother the political folks and their appointees very much, if at all.
  17. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

    Olive, I tend to agree with you but the Skagit and especially the Skagit Chinook maybe the exception. In the past few years a number of poachers have been busted on the Skagit for targeting kings. Some received a bit of publicity. Several of these poachers were specifically targeted by WDFW enforcement. The rule change could make it easier for enforcement to once again target specific poachers if that is the intent.
  18. Smalma

    Smalma Active Member

    Kery -
    I agree that this is good news! The rule changes provide enforcement with a potential tool to address this long standing problem on the Skagit. Hopefully this means that the other shoe will drop and WDFW officers will be spending more time on the river and issuing ciations.

    I have to chuckle about folks nto being checked by enforcement. Since retiring in June of 2005 I have been checked 38 times by various enforcement officers from several agencies - clearly I must look like a likely poacher -LOL. That said other than the Columbia I have not been checked on any river in the State during that time and I'm looking forward to seeing WDFW officers and even being checked on the Skagit.

    Salmo -
    If you check the timing and river areas of the emergency rule changes you will find that areas open for salmon fishing (for example the current sockeye season) are not included in the emergency rule change. It also does not apply during the steelhead seasons.

    BTW -
    I would love to selective gear rules being the normal on all of our anadromous rivers and in fact purposed such a change this regulation cycle.

    Tight lines
  19. Olive bugger

    Olive bugger Active Member

    Well sir, I defer to your knowledge of the situation. My comments were general observations about enforcement. I have not fished the Skagit and have only read of some early pioneer steelhead fishing. If enforcement is in place, there is no doubt that the new ruling will put some teeth in in. I am still skeptical about the courts, but perhaps I am wrong there also. I hope so.
  20. bennysbuddy

    bennysbuddy the sultan of swing

    you can still fish bait for sockeye in the area thats open, Plus they never said you couldn't use sparkplugs , just the hooks can't have a gap bigger than 1/2 inch, I'm wondering what special kind of gillnet the indians are using to catch sockeye but not native endangered kings??