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

May 31, 2019

Recreational halibut fishing to open for additional days in coastal areas

Action: Opens recreational halibut fishing on Saturday, June 15 in Marine Areas 3 and 4 (Neah Bay and La Push). Opens recreational halibut fishing Thursday, June 20 in Marine Area 2 (Westport) and Marine Area 1 (Ilwaco and Chinook). Opens the nearshore area in Marine Area 1 (Ilwaco and Chinook) seven days per week beginning Thursday, June 6.

Effective date: Immediately.

Species affected: Pacific halibut.

Location: Marine Areas 1 through 4.

Reason for action: Similar to the action taken recently to add more halibut days in the Puget Sound (Marine Areas 5-10), and given the higher sport quota in 2019 and poor weather on some of the early halibut days, there is sufficient quota to open additional days for the sport halibut fishery in coastal areas (Marine Areas 1-4). Adding these days will provide Washington sport halibut fishermen with more days to maximize their opportunity to catch the remaining quota.

Additional information: Summary of open sport halibut days for all marine areas:

Marine Area 1:

All-depth: Open Thursday, June 20.

Nearshore: Open seven days per week beginning Thursday, June 6.

Marine Area 2: Open Thursday, June 6 and Thursday, June 20.

Marine Areas 3 and 4: Open Thursday, June 6; Saturday, June 8; Saturday, June 15; Thursday, June 20; and Saturday, June 22

Puget Sound (Marine Areas 5-10): Open Saturday, June 1; Thursday, June 6; Saturday, June 8; Thursday, June 13; Saturday, June 15; Thursday, June 20; Saturday, June 22; Thursday, June 27; and Saturday, June 29.

Marine Area 5: It is permissible for halibut anglers to retain lingcod and Pacific cod caught while fishing for halibut in waters deeper than 120 feet on days that halibut fishing is open.

Retention of lingcod and Pacific cod seaward of 120 feet is not permitted on halibut days in Marine Areas 6-10.

Marine Areas 11-13 are closed.

Marine Areas 1-10: Daily bag limit of 1 halibut per angler, with no minimum size limit. Annual limit of 4. All catch must be recorded on WDFW catch record card. Possession limits remain the same.

Information contact: Heather Hall, coastal policy coordinator, 360-902-2487.

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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