Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by _WW_, Jan 14, 2013.
When the resource is healthy and well clear of being further impacted by C&R and other factors... true enough.
I think we should gillnet them into extinction, After all nobody saved any passenger pigeons for me to shoot!!!!
This made me chuckle. Can you imagine?
I wonder if it would be worthwhile, or realistic, to gather signatures from as many anglers as possible(fly or gear) who participate in this event. The "roster" could be presented at the upcoming WDFW Comissioners Meeting meeting in Olympia. That way, even if the hookless fishermen's presence doesn't attract enough attention visually, the people with decision making power could have a list representing how many anglers believe this is important, kind of like the petition process.
It would make a helluva lot more impact if the "roster" showed up at the meeting in person.
Overwhelming numbers are...well...overwhelming!
WW, appreciate your willingness to attend the commission meeting. Let us know what commission members focus on so that we can collectively address them in person or in our letters to elected officials. Thanks.
OS is a two pronged protest. A (hopefully) large visible protest on the river coupled with (hopefully) as large of a showing at the commisioners' meeting. In my opinion it is the combination of the two that will make this work.
I agree 100% that more people attending both events is best. However, I know that I hope to cast a hookless fly on the 6th, but it is highly doubtful I will be able to go to Olympia. There may be others whose situation is the opposite of mine(can't make the Skagit, but can make Oly). I was just thinking that a long list of names of actual citizens who strongly support the re-opening of the C-N-R season on the Skagit could be an additional supporting document in our effort. Also, thanks for all the effort to those who are involved in this.
so C&R seasons are shown to kill (say) 5% of the catch (in the case of the skagit, the entire run), this means that there must be a harvestable surplus to have a season. Therefore 2.5% of the run can legally be harvested by treaty fishermen.
I for one would rather not have more steelhead be killed by in river gill nets, than hook a fish once a year maybe.
AK - The Skagit River escapement is 6000 fish - over the years the Co Managers Treaty nets get about 200 to 300 fish - The state uses a very high number of C&R mortality 10% so the say that the Skagit looses 600 fish a year to C&R mortality (they think every fish gets caught so that's why the 600) - We think its about 5%, 300 fish - the Skagit has lived on those numbers for over 20 years, we have seen very good returns and returns like 2009 with only 2125 fish. Its the way it is on this system. I hope we see over 5500 fish come back this season a 1000 more then predicted. If so we fished over the 2125 in 09 and for the most part these fish are those fish brood stock - A large percentage of Skagit fish are on a 4 year cycle.
My hope for 2014 and beyond is we get good marine survival and see better returns - upper 6000's to over 7000. If that happens - we hope to see the state implement a mechanism with NOAA to open the Skagit basin based on abundance. No one wants to fish over 2000 fish and have a chance of hurting this run of fish - but if numbers are over the threshold of 6000 - I see and many agree that a C&R fishery will not hurt the over-all health of the run.
I hope that gives you a better sense of what OS is about
Due to computer issues I've lost access to a lot of my old data. Does anyone have the Skagit wild steelhead runsize and escapements by year from 1978 to the present in electronic format? If not I'll ask R4.
I just emailed it to your hotmail acct
It's all these estimated numbers, often based on estimated numbers, being thrown about that has me favoring a more conservative approach. This is the same shit that drove me nuts when we were doing work on the Green back in the 80-90's...decisions being made on numbers coming from everywhere. Get it wrong and you don't necessarily get a do-over.
FSA - with all the debate you have presented on this and I understand how you think that the state should take a conservative approach to C&R - I get your point.
Here is where we disagree and your point in my opinion has little influence on where my decision go's on this.
The way I understand you is - Anglers not fishing is going to help the runs come back faster and that is the State taking a more conservative approach to management of the Skagit's wild Steelhead. The 5 to 10% mortality is not worth the risk to the run. Please correct me if Im wrong on my understanding of your stance on all this.
Where I come in on this is and let me make sure you understand - if the runs over the next couple of years reach 5500 to 6500 fish - so my realistic goal would be fishing in 2015 or 2016. If they meet those numbers - we should be able to have a C&R fishery.
Where I don't agree with you is we as C&R anglers matter - we don't make an impact on that years runs to make an over-all impact on how the run fairs long term. Now you may call me greedy, selfish and short sighted - but I would show you systems (the Sandy, Clackamas, all WA Columbia tribs and the Thompson) where people fish over much smaller runs of fish (C&R) and do not impact the health of the overall fish population.
You ask for a more conservative approach to this - and I really think you have one, but just don't see it. If you take the 10% mortality the state gives C&R - the state projects that ALL Skagit fish will be hooked and released. That is where the 600 or 10% mortality comes from. Do you really think that anglers on the Skagit will hook and release all 6000 fish returning - so that shrinks that mortality number as well. Along with realistic C&R mortality at around 5% we are only impacting 300 fish. You look at it and maybe, maybe with fish being hooked a few times, we could have 4000 fish being hooked and released - if so 10% is well 400 fish lost and at 5% 200 fish lost. Do you really think in a February, March and April the Skagit sees 4000 hooked and released fish?
for all the bitching and moaning on this board about the lack of conservatism in regulations in washington, its pretty nuts that when conservative management is in place everybody bitches.
And yes I imagine every single fish in the system get hooked. I haven't seen data from the skagit, but on "popular" steelhead rivers (we are talking a couple thousand angler days maybe) up here, every fish gets landed pretty much every year. It's a pretty safe assumption that a river as pressured as the skagit every fish will get hooked at least once.
Fact: A properly managed commercial salmon fishery maximizes the amount of salmon on earth.
Fact: Due to commercial fishing there are more salmon on Earth and any other time in history.
Now there's a ton wrong with current management schemes, but lets not demonize commercial fishing as a whole. Lets just work to make it better.
And your saying that I am bitching about a C&R season when numbers get above escapement.
I would like to understand how a properly managed commercial salmon fishery maximizes the amount of salmon on earth and then explain to me how a responsible C&R fishery (when numbers reach escapement) is going to make that run drop off the face of the earth.
Have you even seen the Skagit?
If the run estimates figures are even close to being correct they can not afford to lose 300-600 fish from a C&R mortality rate of 5-10%.
It is unlikley that any of the tribes will target wild steelhead. They'll use any additional impacts to account for bycatch in other fisheries (spring chinook, hatchery steelhead and sockeye). The Chinook and sockeye fisheries are big money, and jeopardized when steelhead impacts get too high.