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

April 9, 2007

Ringold Area Bank Fishery opens May 1 for hatchery spring chinook salmon

Action: Open the Ringold Area Bank Fishery for hatchery spring chinook

Effective date: May 1, 2007 through May 31, 2007

Species affected: Chinook salmon

Location: Waters of the Columbia River adjacent to Ringold Springs Rearing Facility (RSRF) in Franklin Co. from the WDFW markers mile downstream of the Ringold irrigation wasteway outlet to the markers mile upstream of Ringold Springs Creek (hatchery outlet). Only the hatchery side of the river is open bank fishing only; Ringold Springs Creek (hatchery outlet) is closed.

Reason for action: WDFW predicts that 500 to 900 hatchery (adipose fin-clipped) spring chinook will return to the RSRF. These salmon were reared with funding from the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR). All of the fish (100%) were adipose fin-clipped prior to release. The dual purposes of the 2005 smolt release producing this years return are: 1) to provide adult spawners for CTUIRs Walla Walla River spring chinook re-introduction feasibility study, and 2) to provide bank fishing opportunity for anglers in the Tri-Cities area. This is the first Ringold Area Bank Fishery for spring chinook since 2002, when the last year class of federally-funded Mitchell Act fish returned to RSRF. Mitchell Act funding for spring chinook production at RSRF was terminated in late 1999. This fishery will be intensively monitored with the objective of providing a 50:50 allocation between angler harvest and trapped adults for the CTUIRs Walla Walla re-introduction program. The fishery may be closed with little advance notice to allow sufficient numbers of fish to be trapped for the CTUIR.

Other information: Daily limit: 2 hatchery salmon 2 adults or jacks or 1 adult + 1 jack), 12-inch minimum size. Only chinook with a clipped adipose fin and having a healed scar at the location of the fin may be retained. Night closure and non-buoyant lure restrictions in effect. When non-buoyant lure restrictions are in effect, only fish hooked inside the mouth may be retained. All wild chinook (with an intact adipose fin) must be released immediately and may not be removed from the water.

Information contacts: Paul Hoffarth, District 4 Fish Biologist, (509) 545-2284 (Pasco) or John Easterbrooks, Regional Fish Program Manager, (509) 457-9330 (Yakima)

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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