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

August 3, 2010

Maximum size limit of 14 inches for kokanee in Cle Elum, Cooper lakes

Action: Adopt a maximum size limit of 14 inches total length for retention of kokanee (landlocked sockeye salmon) in Cle Elum Lake and Cooper Lake.

Effective date: Immediately through October 31, 2010.

Species affected: Kokanee

Locations: Cle Elum Lake (Reservoir) and Cooper Lake in Kittitas County

Reason for action: The Yakama Nation and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife are continuing the pilot study for reintroduction of anadromous sockeye salmon in the upper Cle Elum Basin that began in 2009. In July 2,000, adult sockeye salmon trapped at Priest Rapids Dam on the Columbia River were released into Cle Elum Lake. An additional 500 sockeye were transported to Cooper Lake near Salmon La Sac. The outlet of Cooper Lake (Cooper River) flows into the Cle Elum River upstream to Lake Cle Elum. A percentage of the fish will be released with radio-tags so they can be tracked to understand their pre-spawning behavior and their migration patterns as they travel into the upper Cle Elum River and upper Cooper River to select spawning habitat. Few anadromous sockeye will be smaller than 16 inches and few landlocked kokanee are greater than 12 inches, therefore a 14 inch size threshold will allow the fisheries in both lakes to proceed this summer without inadvertently harvesting valuable sockeye dedicated to the reintroduction effort.

Other information: The kokanee daily limit in Lake Cle Elum remains the same (16 kokanee, no min. size); see Page 90 in the 2010-11 sport fishing rules pamphlet. The daily limit for trout (including kokanee) remains five fish in Cooper Lake.

Information contacts: Eric Anderson, District 8 Fish Biologist, (509) 457-9301 (Yakima) or John Easterbrooks, Regional Fish Program Manager, (509) 457-9330

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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