Puget Sound Fishing
Nominees sought for advisory group
People interested in serving on the state’s Puget Sound sport fishing advisory group have until Nov. 30 to apply.
As many as 20 people will be chosen to serve for 2016 and 2017. Those selected will provide guidance to the state Department of Fish and Wildlife on issues affecting recreational fisheries in Puget Sound, including salmon and rockfish.
The group meets three or four times a year, with most meetings scheduled February through April during the annual salmon season-setting process. Members also are expected to communicate fishery information and policy decisions to sport fishing groups in their areas.
Advisers do not receive direct compensation for their work.
Nominees do not have to be affiliated with an organized group. Any group or individual can nominate a candidate.
Nominations must include the following information:
Nominee’s name, address, telephone number and email address; relevant experience and reasons for wanting to serve as a member of the advisory group; nominee’s effectiveness in communication; name and contact information for any individual or organization submitting a nomination.
Nominations may be submitted by email to PugetSoundRecFishingGroup@dfw.wa.gov or by mail to Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Attn: Ryan Lothrop, 600 Capitol Way N., Olympia WA, 98501-1091. For more information, contact Lothrop at 360- 902-2808.
Record Opah confirmed for Idaho man
As expected, Jim Watson of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, now holds the state record for the largest opah caught off the Washington coast. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife confirmed the record Tuesday.
Watson caught the fish — a large-eyed, orange-red colored, disc-shaped giant — while fishing with anchovies 45 miles off Westport in September. It weighed 35.67 pounds and measured 37 7/8 inches long.
“Catching the fish was a lot of work, but fun. They really fight, and it took a while,” Watson said in a department news release. “The captain and crew came unglued, because you just don’t see these fish very often.”
Opah are the only fish found to be warm-blooded throughout their bodies, a discovery first reported in the journal Science in May.
Watson’s opah exceeded the previous record by
7.49 pounds. That record was held by Rick Shapland on a fish also caught in the Pacific Ocean, off Westport, in 2013.
wildlife interaction rule CHANGES OK’d
The state Fish and Wildlife Commission has approved revisions to rules addressing various sources of conflict between people and wildlife, including wildlife damaging crops or harming livestock.
The revised rules relate to interactions between humans and wildlife such as deer, elk, cougars or bears. They also address reporting and permit requirements for people dealing with a wildlife conflict.
The commission also approved two land transactions, including the purchase of 235 acres in Cowlitz County to protect riparian areas along Merrill Lake and the Kalama River for steelhead and bull trout habitat.
The commission also approved the purchase of 2,061 acres of riparian and high meadow lands in
Asotin County. The state plan to acquire this land nearly completes a multiphased expansion of the Chief Joseph Wildlife Area. It will preserve critical habitat for threatened salmon, steelhead and trout, as well as deer, bighorn sheep and elk.
The commission also heard public comments on proposed changes in sportfishing rules for freshwater areas of Puget Sound and the coast. The final decisions are to be made at the December meeting.
Compiled by Jeffrey P. Mayor,