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#1060163 - 08/04/22 08:20 AM MA 9 to Close Fri.
RUNnGUN Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 1222
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“Smart people only believe half of what they hear. Smarter people know which half to believe”

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#1060164 - 08/04/22 08:47 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
seabeckraised Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 05/12/21
Posts: 134
Loc: Mason County
After the bloodbath in MAs 4 and 5, I’m surprised it lasted this long. Thinking maybe a lot of those fish coming in took a right turn into Hood Canal or headed towards the MA7 terminal zones. I know a from experience a lot of the early Chinook caught in MA4 were likely blackmouth. A significant portion of that quota was Blackmouth, not returning Chinook.

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#1060167 - 08/04/22 10:54 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
slabhunter Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 01/17/04
Posts: 3717
Loc: Sheltona Beach
For sure the writing was on the wall for the Chinook closure. Glad it will remain open for hatchery Coho.
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#1060168 - 08/04/22 10:56 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
GodLovesUgly Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 04/20/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: WaRshington
9 Total days of chinook opportunity for 2022 in Area 7.
14 Total days of chinook opportunity for 2022 in Area 9.

Out of 365 days in a year.

This is compared to the historical summer/winter split in Area 7 of roughly ~240 days of opportunity, and rought~225 days summer/winter split in Area 9.

A 90-97% loss of total available oppotunity in Areas 9 and 7.

What recovered stocks do we have to show for these near 100% curtailments of our fisheries? I'll wait....
_________________________
When I grow up I want to be,
One of the harvesters of the sea.
I think before my days are done,
I want to be a fisherman.

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#1060170 - 08/04/22 11:29 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Lifter99 Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 12/01/18
Posts: 206
Lots of surplus hatchery chinook at the hatcheries this year and lots of hatchery chinook for tribal nets.

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#1060172 - 08/05/22 07:47 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Smalma Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/25/01
Posts: 2821
Loc: Marysville

GodLoveUgly -
As you know the Chinook opportunities in both MA 7 and MA 9 are limited by Stillaguamish Chinook impacts.

I agree that not fishing will recovery those Chinooks but at the same time it is equally clear that any Chinook fishing will be limited by encounters with Stillaguamish Chinook and any significant in increases fishing opportunities in those two areas will be dependent on improvement in the status of those Chinook.

The recently released co-manager PS Chinook management plan in the Stillaguamish profile has a table with run reconstruction from 1990 through 2013. In the 1990s the average Recruit per Spawner (R/S) was 1.05 or for every 20 fish on the spawning grounds 21 potential spawners were created. For the 2000 to 2013 period the R/S was 0.64 or for every 20 spawners only 13 potential spawners were created. Obviously at such low productivity the population is not sustainable. This underlines the failure of more than decades of recovery efforts of PS Chinook.

In the case of the Stillaguamish Chinook my opinion is that failure is the unwillingness of the decision makers (at both the State and tribal level) to attempt to address the key production bottleneck. That bottleneck is the poor survival of the eggs while in the gravel. That poor survival is driven by increasing flooding levels, since 1929 on the North Fork of the Stillaguamish the largest 9 floods have occurred since 2000. If one had only the flood records from pre-2000 the magnitude of several of those post 2000 floods would have been considered to have been more than 500-year events.

Unless there is a change in the recovery paradigm to address the key production bottle necks basin by basin or the Feds and co-managers declare the Stillaguamish non-viable Chinook by the time you are my age your fishing in Puget Sound will still be limited by the status of Stillaguamish Chinook.

Curt

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#1060174 - 08/05/22 08:47 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Salmo g. Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/08/99
Posts: 13363
Ah yes, if only we don't fish on Stillaguamish Chinook, surely they will recover, right? NO. The environmental conditions Smalma alludes to with respect to Stillaguamish River flooding means that the Stilly Chinook population has a near zero chance of recovering to a self-sustaining abundance level in the next 100 years. (Self-sustaining meaning that spawners at least replace themselves, with recruits per spawner equaling or exceeding 1.0.)

I expect that the Stillaguamish River will continue to be closed to recreational fishing from Feb. 1 through Sept. 15 for the next 100 years, or longer. And the associated Marine fishing areas 7 & 9 will have very few days open to recreational fishing for the next 100 years, or longer. WDFW knows this too; they just don't want to admit that they have no plan to increase recreational fishing opportunity. WDFW is reactionary. If other Chinook populations become as imperiled as the Stilly stock, we can expect similar reductions in fishing opportunity in other Marine and River fishing areas. This is the default future of salmon (and steelhead) angling that WDFW has planned for us.

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#1060175 - 08/05/22 09:17 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: Salmo g.]
DrifterWA Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 04/25/00
Posts: 4955
Loc: East of Aberdeen, West of Mont...
Originally Posted By: Salmo g.
Ah yes, if only we don't fish on Stillaguamish Chinook, surely they will recover, right? NO. The environmental conditions Smalma alludes to with respect to Stillaguamish River flooding means that the Stilly Chinook population has a near zero chance of recovering to a self-sustaining abundance level in the next 100 years. (Self-sustaining meaning that spawners at least replace themselves, with recruits per spawner equaling or exceeding 1.0.)

I expect that the Stillaguamish River will continue to be closed to recreational fishing from Feb. 1 through Sept. 15 for the next 100 years, or longer. And the associated Marine fishing areas 7 & 9 will have very few days open to recreational fishing for the next 100 years, or longer. WDFW knows this too; they just don't want to admit that they have no plan to increase recreational fishing opportunity. WDFW is reactionary. If other Chinook populations become as imperiled as the Stilly stock, we can expect similar reductions in fishing opportunity in other Marine and River fishing areas. This is the default future of salmon (and steelhead) angling that WDFW has planned for us.


Coastal rivers are in the same boat...native steelhead will be a long time in any kind of recovery mode.

Every one is at fault, IMO. What seemed like a unlimited number of wild/native steelhead before the Bolt decision, really wasn't. WDFW, slow to react, sports, numbers of fishers increased, more boats on all areas of rivers, guides, tribal netting, later into seasons.

You can have all the committees you want, spend 100's of hours on planning, bottom line it will just take many "cycles" of no one fishing to reverse the trend.
_________________________
"Worse day sport fishing, still better than the best day working"

"I thought growing older, would take longer"

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#1060176 - 08/05/22 10:22 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 6722
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
The other option is to actually accomplish recovery or quit. May take an act of Congress but I would like to see a line in the sand. On Stilly, say, by 2030 the R/S will be greater than 1.0 for at least half the years between now and then. Unless there are X consecutive 1.0+ including 2030 the run is considered non-viable for regulatory purposes. Apply this to all T&E species. Either we make progress or we save the money.

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#1060177 - 08/05/22 10:24 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 6722
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
To expand on Drifter's argument for the R/S for a stock (over all catches) is less than 1.0 no amount of closures will save them. It is obviously the habitat. IF the R/S for the stock is >1.0 then fishing is a major problem and closures will help.

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#1060178 - 08/05/22 11:54 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Smalma Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/25/01
Posts: 2821
Loc: Marysville
While the Stillaguamish is the poster child of a Chinook stock in trouble (non-viable) it is hardly the only PS stock in trouble.

With minimal effort I was able to find 7 other PS stocks that consistently have R/S less than 1: Nooksack, Sammamish, Green, White River, Nisqually, Skokomish, and Dungeness. They all require some of sort of hatchery support/supplementation to assure the fish continue to return. How do we as a society justify continuing to spend precious recovery dollars in those basins without some sort of major paradigm shift where and how those dollars are spent.

Curt

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#1060179 - 08/05/22 12:33 PM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
seabeckraised Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 05/12/21
Posts: 134
Loc: Mason County
Especially when you consider that many Wild Chinook, like those in the Skokomish and greater Hood Canal, likely have zero genetics from the aboriginal fish in that river and are bastardized fish from the Green and other watersheds. While “Wild” in the sense of being born in the gravel, it makes you wonder if any fish remaining have the original genetic makeup that evolved specific to that river over millions of years.

Shutting down winter blackmouth in the HC is another example of shutting down a fishery due to constraining stocks such as the mid-HC rivers.

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#1060180 - 08/05/22 01:06 PM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 6722
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
If you believe in evolution there is really no problem in my mind IF in the past there are hatchery fish that spawned in the wild. Simply leave them alone, don't allow more hatchery fish out there, and Darwin will very quickly take care of any deleterious genetics. Society just doesn't give a rat's *ss about the fish in any way shape or form.

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#1060181 - 08/05/22 01:38 PM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: Carcassman]
Larry B Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 10/22/09
Posts: 2995
Loc: University Place and Whidbey I...
With the hundreds of millions of Chinook having been planted out of their basin of origin there is no question but the stocks in those rivers have been adulterated.

Further, it is NOAA/NMFS's goal to accomplish exactly what you have written - allow evolution to take its course on born in the gravel fish. Of course the final product with be a genetic stock adapted to the current habitat and we all know how significantly that has been altered.

If that is what we want then go for it recognizing how it will continue to impact our fisheries for generations here in the PNW.
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It's the person who has done nothing who is sure nothing can be done. (Ewing)

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#1060183 - 08/05/22 07:47 PM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 6722
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
I seriously doubt that wild stocks can provide the level of harvest we seem to want. If we want to keep fishing at reasonably "current" levels we will need to triage. Some streams for wild and some for hatchery. In order for this to work most of the fisheries will need to be terminal.

Basically, if you want strong wild fish populations in some watersheds we will need to forego massive marine harvests.

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#1060185 - 08/06/22 09:19 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Salmo g. Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/08/99
Posts: 13363
Yes, yes, and yes.

I want wild salmon. I want wild salmon in habitat that can support populations of wild salmon. Line in the sand is a good idea.

I've written before that the Stilly hatchery Chinook program should continue. Maybe be increased, at least to a level that can produce returns large enough to ensure continuation of Stilly Chinook genetics. But using Stilly Chinook as the reason to prohibit recreational fishing in the Stilly for most of the months of the year is disingenuous. Oh, and it leads to a lack of respect for WDFW, which is where the agency's disingenuous actions have taken me. Anyway, I digress. Continue the Stilly hatchery Chinook program, on the chance that perhaps within the next 100 years the habitat will recover to the point that it can once again support a self-sustaining wild Chinook population. But every serious biologist has to know that time ain't now, and it will be a very long time coming, if ever.

As Smalma points out, it isn't just the Stilly Chinook that are in trouble. It's just a matter of time, and not a long time, before every river system is closed to recreational fishing for reasons like are used on the Stilly. Society isn't going to go along with the massive environmental restrictions that would be necessary to recover PS Chinook habitat in every river within our lifetimes. I think we should protect the populations and the habitat that is viable, try to recover the habitat that is realistically recoverable within an acceptable timeframe. And if people so choose, then accept hatchery populations in the watersheds that cannot support viable, self-sustaining wild runs.

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#1060188 - 08/06/22 10:20 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 6722
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
One of the more disingenuous actions was actually taken by the Feds. In order to (in my view) not deal with AK and other mixed stock fisheries they set "Recovery Exploitation Rates) that for some stocks were above the calculated MSY fishing rate. Recovery is not the goal; maintaining politically popular fisheries is.

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#1060193 - 08/06/22 04:56 PM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: Salmo g.]
Brent K Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 105
Loc: Arlington, Washington
What really pisses me off is that I can't take my nephews cutthroat fishing on the Stilly right now but I can go to the Tulalip Bubble and kill 2 wild chinook if I want to. I don't believe for one second that Stilly chinook are not killed at the bubble yet I can't fish for trout even on the North Fork which is fly only. Why not put a floating line only, no weighted fly restriction in place on the NF and let people fish for the cutthroat that are there? They did it back in the 90's.

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#1060194 - 08/06/22 04:59 PM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: RUNnGUN]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 6722
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Lack of functional gonads. That and zero understanding of their source of funding.

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#1060200 - 08/07/22 11:16 AM Re: MA 9 to Close Fri. [Re: Brent K]
Salmo g. Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/08/99
Posts: 13363
Originally Posted By: Brent K
What really pisses me off is that I can't take my nephews cutthroat fishing on the Stilly right now but I can go to the Tulalip Bubble and kill 2 wild chinook if I want to. I don't believe for one second that Stilly chinook are not killed at the bubble yet I can't fish for trout even on the North Fork which is fly only. Why not put a floating line only, no weighted fly restriction in place on the NF and let people fish for the cutthroat that are there? They did it back in the 90's.


WDFW cannot adopt sensible conservation oriented regulations like that because the Stillaguamish Tribe will not let them. In order to have Chinook salmon seasons at all in Marine Area 9, WDFW will do whatever the PS treaty tribes tell them to do in those closed door meetings that occur during NOF.

Fly fishing for sea run cutthroat trout is extremely popular, in part because of regulations that go back to the early 1990s resulted in a healthy SRC population. But even so, that fishery is a very small "niche" market as recreational fishing in WA goes, so it's easy for WDFW to throw it under the bus when the Tribe insists.

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