State, federal and tribal fish biologists have cut in half their forecast for spring chinook salmon headed for the upper Columbia and Snake rivers.
The Columbia River Technical Advisory Committee announced this week they predict the run destined for upstream of Bonneville Dam will number 83,000, down from the December forecast of 160,400.
That 83,000 translates to a final Bonneville Dam count of about 75,000, said Stuart Ellis, chairman of the committee.
The daily counts need to average a bit more than 1,300 a day to achieve 75,000 at Bonneville by the end of the season on June 15..
• Angling remains opens in the lower Willamette River on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays downstream of Willamette Falls.
Sampling in the Willamette downstream of the St. Johns Bridge and including Multnomah Channel during last week’s three-day fishing period tallied 945 trips with 173 spring chinook kept and 46 released.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife reports that the season’s sport catch in the lower Willamette through Saturday was 4,427, while passage over Willamette Falls was 4,072.
At the same date a year ago, the passage over Willamette Falls was 11,646 and total passage for the spring run ended up at 30,129.
• Fishing for hatchery steelhead and jack chinook in the Columbia River downstream of Interstate 5, which normally opens on May 16, is staying closed to avoid incidental handle of spring chinook. Shad fishing is open.
• Spearfish Lake in Klickitat County was planted with 1,500 additional rainbow trout last week.
• Northern pikeminnow anglers are doing best in The Dalles area of the Columbia River in the sport-reward program.
The average catch per trip was 11.7 at The Dalles check stations. Catch averages were next best at Bingen with 9.6 pikeminnow per trip followed by 8.8 at Giles French Park in Rufus, Ore., and 6.7 at Gleason boat ramp in Portland.
• Kokanee fishing never is predictable, but catches a Merwin Reservoir have been fairly good in the past week. Kokanee also have begun to bite in Yale Reservoir.
Angler checks from the Washington (WDFW) and Oregon (ODFW) departments of Fish and Wildlife:
Mid-Columbia — The Dalles pool, 30 boaters with 221 walleye kept and 12 released. (ODFW)
• John Day pool, 36 boaters with 154 walleye kept and 40 released; 20 bank rods with 84 walleye kept and 15 released. (ODFW)
Cowlitz — Forty-nine boaters with six adult spring chinook kept; 105 bank rods with seven adult spring chinook kept. (WDFW)
At the salmon hatchery, the return for five days of separator operations with 110 winter steelhead adult, one cutthroat trout, 551 adult spring chinook, 52 jack chinook and 10 summer steelhead.
Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery already more than 2,900 adult spring chinook. The escapement goal is about 1,500 adults.
Kalama —Seventy-eight boaters with 11 adult spring chinook and two hatchery steelhead kept plus one wild steelhead released; 121 bank rods with 13 adult spring chinook kept and one wild steelhead released. (WDFW)
Wind — Two-hundred-eighty-two boat rods with 47 adult and two jack spring chinook kept plus one adult chinook released. (WDFW)
Drano Lake — Four-hundred-seventy-seven boat rods with 68 adult and one jack spring chinook kept and one adult chinook released. (WDFW)
Klickitat — Eleven bank rods with seven adult spring chinook, one jack chinook and one steelhead kept. (WDFW)
Yale Reservoir — Two boaters with 19 kokanee and one trout kept plus 14 kokanee and a steelhead smolt released. About half the kokanee were longer than 10 inches.