Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife FISHING RULE CHANGE
WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

May 31, 2007

Sport crabbing will get an earlier start off Port Townsend, Port Angeles (Marine Area 6)

Action: Starting June 27, crab fishing in Marine Area 6 will be open Wednesday through Saturday, a week before the date published in WDFW's 2007-08 sport fishing pamphlet.

Effective date: 7 a.m. on Wednesday, June 27, 2007.

Species affected: All crab.

Location: All waters of the eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca (Marine Area 6), from Wilson Point near Port Townsend to Low Point west of Port Angeles.

Reason for action: The earlier start date was the result of a shellfish management plan recently negotiated with affected treaty tribes.

Other information:

June 18: Marine areas 4 (Neah Bay east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line), 5 (Sekiu) and 13 (south Puget Sound) will open seven days per week through Jan. 2, 2008.

June 27: Marine area 6 (eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca) will open Wednesdays through Saturdays only, plus the entire Labor Day weekend and will close the evening of Sept. 3 for a catch assessment.

July 4: Marine areas 7 South (San Juan Islands), 8-1 (Deception Pass to East Point), 8-2 (East Point to Possession Point), 9 (Admiralty Inlet), 10 (Seattle/Bremerton), 11 (Tacoma/Vashon) and 12 (Hood Canal) will open Wednesdays through Saturdays only, plus the entire Labor Day weekend and will close the evening of Sept. 3 for a catch assessment.

July 18: Marine Area 7 East (Bellingham and Samish bays) will open Wednesdays through Saturdays only, plus the entire Labor Day weekend and will close the evening of Sept. 29 for a catch assessment.

Aug. 15: Marine Area 7 North (Lummi Island/Blaine) will open Wednesdays through Saturdays only, plus the entire Labor Day weekend and will close the evening of Sept. 29 for a catch assessment.

All areas will open at 7 a.m. on the dates noted.

As in previous years, the daily catch limit in Puget Sound is five Dungeness crab, males only, in hard-shell condition with a minimum carapace width of 6 inches. In addition, fishers may catch six red rock crab of either sex per day, provided those crab measure at least 5 inches across.

All crab fishers age 15 or older must carry a current Washington fishing license. In addition, all Puget Sound crabbers " regardless of age " must obtain a crab-licensing endorsement and record their catch on a catch record card. For more information on the Puget Sound crab fishery, see http: //wdfw.wa.gov/fish/shelfish/crab/index.htm on the WDFW website.

Contact: Dayv Lowry, Point Whitney (Region 6), (360) 796-4601 ext. 228 or Steve Burton, Mill Creek (Region 4), (360) 775-1311 ext. 126.

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.