World's biggest SRC

#61
This past week the Hood Canal was chalk full of gill nets. We literally had to zig zag around them all week. At the ramp one of the buyers asked me what my clients are fishing for all the time with the fly rod. Which sparked up a pretty interesting/disturbing conversation.

He said they regularly get cutthroat in their nets fishing for coho and chum salmon... 2-7lbs!! He said they can not sell them obviously, so they take them home as a bi-catch free meal. I obviously was disturbed, but my curiosity sparked a further conversation, and he said they get them almost every set in their beach netting, and sometimes they will get 10-20 at a time.

Now, this past week, we had to fish the strange spots to find anything over 12", and we found very few fish that were not covered in net marks if they were above 12".
 

XP

Active Member
#62
This past week the Hood Canal was chalk full of gill nets. We literally had to zig zag around them all week. At the ramp one of the buyers asked me what my clients are fishing for all the time with the fly rod. Which sparked up a pretty interesting/disturbing conversation.

He said they regularly get cutthroat in their nets fishing for coho and chum salmon... 2-7lbs!! He said they can not sell them obviously, so they take them home as a bi-catch free meal. I obviously was disturbed, but my curiosity sparked a further conversation, and he said they get them almost every set in their beach netting, and sometimes they will get 10-20 at a time.

Now, this past week, we had to fish the strange spots to find anything over 12", and we found very few fish that were not covered in net marks if they were above 12".
That's f****ed up. This is a problem.
 

Bob Smith

Active Member
#64
I think the waters I fish (southern Oregon and northern California) are missing the netting part of the equation thus potentially larger fish? The Rogue and Chetco are also reputed (by a USFS fishery biologist) to have a fair number of 4-5 class pound cutthroat. We also have fewer people targeting them - most of the anglers I've talked to use gear and there aren't all that many... as far as I can tell. Chinook and steelhead are king.

There is a tribal net fishery by the Yurok's on the Klamath. They target primarily chinook and try to avoid coho. I'm not sure of the net dimensions though I'm sure there's a small subsistence fishery that targets steelhead. There are plenty of cutts in the Klamath Estuary which me is an untapped opportunity.

What limits coastal cutthroat distribution in California is habitat quality, primarily water temperatures. The Klamath is just too warm above Johnson Creek (at about river mile 20) while the Rogue River has coastal cutthroat all the way to Shady Cove and even above. Cutthroat distribution in other watersheds is generally limited to areas within 5-10 miles of the coast. Because of the imperiled status of coho - gozillions of dollars are being spent to restore and protect small spawning and rearing tributaries.

I will see if I can dig up some photos - there may be one at the Lake Earl Wildlife Area office of the 5 pound fish taken by the Department employee.
 

holtad

Active Member
#65
There's a lot of truth to that I think. I'm not sure what the target minimum size is for the nets, but I would think they are setup to catch 3-4lb+ salmon. So any SRC much over 20" would be in danger. It would be interesting to see an honest report of SRC bycatch from the tribes.

+1 for these 2 posts.
 

Stonefish

Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater
#66
This past week the Hood Canal was chalk full of gill nets. We literally had to zig zag around them all week. At the ramp one of the buyers asked me what my clients are fishing for all the time with the fly rod. Which sparked up a pretty interesting/disturbing conversation.

He said they regularly get cutthroat in their nets fishing for coho and chum salmon... 2-7lbs!! He said they can not sell them obviously, so they take them home as a bi-catch free meal. I obviously was disturbed, but my curiosity sparked a further conversation, and he said they get them almost every set in their beach netting, and sometimes they will get 10-20 at a time.

Now, this past week, we had to fish the strange spots to find anything over 12", and we found very few fish that were not covered in net marks if they were above 12".
Justin,
Thanks for the info. I know you spend a ton of time on the water with clients and are very in tune as to what is going on in regards to the searun scene.

If you don't mind, I have a favor to ask.
If you encounter that fish buyer again, please ask him if he could take pictures of some of the large searuns that end up in the nets.
Then have him text you the photos.
We'll never eliminate netting, but perhaps we can use the photos to get the net mess size increased to eliminate some of the cutthroat bycatch.

Thanks,
SF
 
#70
Jeezus. I brought this up a long time ago... would there be ANY way to prove that using gill nets were in violation of the protection of these fish under law?
One could make a f*cking study by following the nets around, and count by-catch numbers. If they are as startling as we all think they are, could that be grounds for some kind of litigation? This seems out of hand.
 
#72
Jeezus. I brought this up a long time ago... would there be ANY way to prove that using gill nets were in violation of the protection of these fish under law?
One could make a f*cking study by following the nets around, and count by-catch numbers. If they are as startling as we all think they are, could that be grounds for some kind of litigation? This seems out of hand.
If nothing is being done to protect ESA listed salmon and steelhead as bycatch in gill nets then chances are nothing is going to be done about SRC bycatch, which are not protected. They are just catch and release in marine waters for recreational anglers per WDFW, not the feds or tribes.
 

Greg Armstrong

OldRodsHaveMoreFun
#73
If nothing is being done to protect ESA listed salmon and steelhead as bycatch in gill nets then chances are nothing is going to be done about SRC bycatch, which are not protected. They are just catch and release in marine waters for recreational anglers per WDFW, not the feds or tribes.
This seems to be the sad truth...
 

Gyrfalcon2015

Wild Trout forever
#74
Let's see, you get a ticket for a "rolling stop"...brake light out? damn near end up on an episode of "COPS"....go fishing? get your license checked once every 20 years..or 30 in my case.. ONCE!

Nobody is watching out on fishing regulations. Look at those once every 2-3 year "poaching busts". Gee, they buddy up with these goons, watch them until they kill 100 animals for 3 years, haul them in..sort of, and it gets posted in the paper like they are all over the criminals?? Bullshit. Arrest them the first time they poach and end it. They get nothing but a tap on the wrist, not even a slap.

Does anyone remember 30-40 years ago, when you could go to the coast and see international fishing fleets off the coast taking fish? Correct me if I am wrong, wasn't the buffer only a few miles out, to where it is now 200-300 to international waters?

Until they start enforcing some rules , this is a done deal. Disgracefeul Fisheries Dept and the like.
 
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#75
Justin,
Thanks for the info. I know you spend a ton of time on the water with clients and are very in tune as to what is going on in regards to the searun scene.

If you don't mind, I have a favor to ask.
If you encounter that fish buyer again, please ask him if he could take pictures of some of the large searuns that end up in the nets.
Then have him text you the photos.
We'll never eliminate netting, but perhaps we can use the photos to get the net mess size increased to eliminate some of the cutthroat bycatch.

Thanks,
SF

I thought of that right as I pulled into my driveway! If I ever see him again that will be my first thing I say!