WDFW hates wild steelhead! [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: WDFW hates wild steelhead!

03-28-2002, 12:08 AM
Just so ya'll know whats going on down here in southwest Washington. You have all heard of this wonderful run of spring chinook we are supposed to be getting. Well the commercial fuys are targeting them with gillnets designed for coho. They are 5.5 inch mesh which the large chinooks theoretically cannot get deep enough into to be trapped by the gills. This allows them to release native chinook "unharmed". However it is the perfect size for trapping coho by the gills. Coho as we all know are about the same size as steelhead. It therefore stands to reason that steelhead will get trapped by the gills.
Here is the scary part. The netters are catching 2 steelhead for every chinook they are catching!!!!!

WDFW is claiming there is a 2% mortality associated with these by-caught steelhead. That is imediate mortality not delayed mortality and does not count fish that fall out of the nets dead , that are plucked from the nets ny marine mammals ( which commercial fishermen have always complained about). And it does not take into accout fish that are caught by these same mammals because they are exhausted from being in the net.

All for the sake of a commercial fishery that is a benefit to the economy in the thousands. While doing damage in the millions.

What more can I say?? WDFW Juro may i have your permission to cuss up a storm and use the most foul language known to man to describe what I think of WDFW???

old man
03-28-2002, 06:18 AM
I know how you feel. The netters get more fish in one swoop than I will ever get in a life time flyfishing for them

But being down in the lower part of the state you have more rivers to fish. Up where I'm at every thing is closed. I think the main reason that they close it is so the netters can get more fish.
Just a thought. Jim S.

03-28-2002, 07:29 PM

You are dead on. This tangle tooth fishery has been beeping hard and loud on the WSC radar screen for the last few weeks. I wish I could say that this was not all true but I can't. In fact it even goes beyond the facts you have posted but that is not important. The only silver lining is that this fishery has been so destructive that everyone is on top of it. The word is that if allowed at all next year, and that is not a certainty at all after this debacle, there will be a reduction to a 3" net size.

And since Juro is off fishing, I will answer for him and say regrettably no, no cussing laden rants against the "stewards of Washington's natural resources" allowed. If you feel you absolutely have to, go ahead and I will edit.


03-28-2002, 09:33 PM
old man our rivers are closed also...

old man
03-29-2002, 10:21 AM
Sorry. I thought that they were open. See what I get for thinking.

03-29-2002, 02:08 PM
Lived in Seattle area for many, many years (pre and post Bolt) and seen how the folks in Olympia really are clueless as to the basics.

Oregon may have it's share of 'tree-huggers' but when it comes to 'fish and game' general (un)common sense seems to prevail. Game violations: Washington has a few folks wondering the woods; in Oregon we have very few game dept staff but the Oregon State Police (ya, da Cops!) do 90% of the checking .... and they really check! See a game violation, call 911 and you'll have the officer there in short order (done this and it was -given the situation- wonderful. $300 tickets to 4 guys and one I heard got handcuffs)

By and large our fish runs are increasing in many areas, not decreasing and these fish swim in the same part of the North Pacific. They just don't get hammered by nets, et. al. when they get "home." The guy with the rod and reel is as about 'dangerous' as it gets.