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

March 18, 2004

Washington tributary sport smelt dipping season reduced to two days per week

Action: The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is reducing the number of days anglers may dip for smelt in Washington Columbia River tributaries from the current seven days a week to two days per week, allowing dipping only on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Dipping hours remain 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., and the daily limit remains 20 pounds per person.

Mainstem Columbia remains open 7 days per week and 24 hours per day, and the daily limit remains 20 pounds per person.

Effective date: Friday, March 19 through March 31, 2004.

Species affected: Columbia River Smelt (eulachon).

Location: The Columbia River and tributaries below Bonneville Dam.

Other information: No license is required. Daily limit is 20 pounds per person (about 2/3 of a 5-gallown bucket). Dip net gear only. Please remember to respect private property.

Reason for action: The Columbia River smelt run size has been downgraded from Level 3 to Level 2. This modified smelt fishery regulation is consistent with Level 2 fisheries in the "Washington and Oregon Eulachon Management Plan" for the Columbia River and Washington tributaries.

Information contact: WDFW Region 5 office, (360) 696-6211.

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.

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