June 3, 2022 — Last week, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) announced it would shut down salmon fishing on the Siuslaw River for most of the second half of 2022.
According to ODFW, forecasted chinook returns for 2022 are 2,724 adults, which is well below the number needed to meet spawner abundance goals in the basin. The Chinook sliding scale document identified in the Conservation Plan averages last years’ escapement (3,528) and this years’ forecast (2,724) to determine a closure metric (3,126) which is still well below the closure criteria (3,987).
In 2014, the Commission adopted the Coastal Multi-species Conservation and Management Plan that guides ODFW’s fish management. The lingering effects of very poor ocean conditions that began that year are impacting wild coastal fall Chinook. Ocean conditions have since improved, but positive effects will not be seen until future years.
Unfortunately, this means the Siuslaw River will be closed to all salmon angling from Aug. 1 to Dec. 31.
On May 24, the ODFW reserved a space at the Florence Events Center (FEC) for a meeting that would be for “public information on the fall salmon seasons. ODFW will cover the process for setting salmon seasons, data on salmon returns (Chinook and Coho) and this year’s regulations.”
About 24 hours later, on May 25, ODFW cancelled its reservation with the FEC.
“The in-person meeting at the Florence Events Center was cancelled in favor of a webinar,” said John Spangler, ODFW’s Midcoast District Fish Biologist. “There is interest in having a higher level presentation to look at the bigger picture issues with ocean conditions, restrictions along the coast and Conservation plan direction.”
The public is invited to participate in the online discussion.
The meeting, to be held on Tuesday, June 7, at 6 p.m., will be livestreamed at www.youtube.com/user/IEODFW.
Public comments and questions for fish biologists hosting the webinar should be submitted at odfw.wufoo.com/forms/2022-fall-coastal-salmon-seasons/.
For more information, go to hwww.dfw.state.or.us/news/2022/05_May/052622.asp.