With good numbers of hatchery spring chinook returning to the Nestucca basin, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has decided to extend the fishing season in Three Rivers through July 15.
Three Rivers is a tributary of the Nestucca River near Hebo and the location of Cedar Creek Hatchery where the returning fish were raised. Biologists recommended the season extension because it appears there will be more hatchery spring chinook returning to the hatchery than will be needed for brood stock needs. Biologists also credit the extended season to new gear restrictions and a coordinated enforcement program with the Oregon State Police, Fish and Wildlife Division.
“We implemented a new gear regulation this year that has reduced illegal snagging and flossing of fish in Three Rivers,” says Chris Knutsen, ODFW District Biologist in Tillamook. “In addition, the Oregon State Police have done a great job of keeping the snaggers off of the river through increased patrols and other law enforcement efforts.”
Three Rivers downstream from the Cedar Creek Hatchery weir was previously scheduled to close July 1. With the extension, the season for adipose fin-clipped spring chinook, adipose fin-clipped summer steelhead and cutthroat trout will now be open through July 15.
“This will give anglers two additional weekends, including the Fourth of July holiday, to take advantage of this opportunity.” says Knutsen.
All regulations listed in the 2013 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations will remain in place through the end the season. This includes the recent anti-snagging gear restrictions that prohibit leaders longer than 36 inches, and limit anglers to a single point hook with a gap 3/8-inch or less.
Logo courtesy Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife