Estuary sturgeon season closed beginning Friday

first_imgSturgeon angling in the Columbia River estuary will be closed beginning Friday, 10 days earlier than scheduled.Catch and fishing effort zoomed in the first half of June and the season guideline of 4,042 almost will be reached by the end of angling on Thursday, said John North of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.If Friday were to stay open, the projected season catch is 4,160 sturgeon, or 103 percent of the guideline.Washington and Oregon agreed Tuesday to implement the Friday closure.“It’s amazing what more normal (Columbia River) flows and a bit of smelt and anchovies will do,” said Butch Smith of the Ilwaco Charter Association.Washington and Oregon have 1,733 sturgeon set aside for a season July 11-13 and July 18-20 in the lower Willamette River. Smith asked that 200 of those fish be given to the estuary to keep fishing open through Friday.Bob Rees of the Northwest Guides and Anglers Association asked that the estuary legal retention slot — now 41 to 54 inches — be reduced to 51 to 54 inches or 52 to 54 inches to keep fishing open.“We can easily sell it as a trophy opportunity,” Rees said.Grant Putnam of Grant’s Outdoor Adventures said he has a group of 24 coming in from the East Coast to fish Thursday through Monday.last_img

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