The Northern Pikeminnow Sport Reward Program met its annual goal to remove 10% to 20% of pikeminnow in the Columbia and Snake rivers that prey on juvenile salmon and steelhead, the Bonneville Power Administration reported.
In 2020, the number of fish removed by 2,450 registered anglers was 103,114, an average of 6.5 fish per day. This paid out $839,461 to anglers.
The top angler removed 5,579 northern pikeminnow for a payout of $48,501.
When the season opened May 11, registered anglers had the opportunity to make $5 to $8 for each northern pikeminnow at least 9 inches long, and specially tagged northern pikeminnow were worth $500.
Program managers temporarily increased the reward to a flat $10 per fish late in the season to spur angler participation — which was a bit lower than normal due to the pandemic — and to take advantage of favorable river conditions during the season’s 11-day extension in October.
The program will resume its pre-pandemic bounties when the northern pikeminnow season kicks off again in spring. The typical season runs May 1 to Sept. 30.
For more information about the pikeminnow program, call 800-858-9015 or visit www.pikeminnow.org.
(updated Jan. 20)
Fishing reports for waters in southwest Washington, including the Columbia River and tributaries as reported to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife on Jan. 20.
Always check the WDFW website at wdfw.wa.gov/fishing for the latest fishing rules and regulations as seasons can change or close quickly if necessary.
Salmon/Steelhead: Columbia River mainstem
Buoy 10 upstream to the Interstate 5 Bridge — Through March 31, the daily limit is 6 with up to two adult salmon or two hatchery steelhead or one of retained. Release all salmon other than hatchery Chinook. Release wild steelhead.
I-5 Bridge upstream to The Dalles Dam — Through March 31, daily limit is two hatchery steelhead. Release all salmon and wild steelhead.
The Dalles Dam upstream to Highway 395 Bridge at Pasco — Through March 31 the daily limit is one hatchery steelhead. Release all salmon and wild steelhead.
Salmon/Steelhead: Columbia River tributaries
Klickitat River from the mouth to Fisher Hill Bridge — Effective through January 31, the salmon daily limit is six with up to three adults may be retained.
Sturgeon: Columbia River mainstem
Columbia River, from Buoy 10 upstream to John Day Dam including adjacent tributaries — Catch and release fishing only. Fishing for sturgeon at night is closed.
Columbia River, John Day Dam upstream to McNary Dam — White Sturgeon open for retention fishing until annual quota is met. Minimum size 43-inch fork length, maximum size 54-inch fork length. Daily limit one, annual limit two fish. Catch and release allowed when closed to retention. Fishing for sturgeon at night is closed.
Bonneville, The Dalles, John Day pools — No reports.
John Day Pool — 46 estimated harvest of 105 guideline (44 percent of guideline).
Bonneville, The Dalles pools — No reports.
John Day Pool — One bank angler had no catch; 20 boats/53 rods kept 69 walleye.
Columbia River tributaries
Cowlitz River – I-5 Bridge downstream — 66 bank rods kept one steelhead and released one Chinook.
Above the I-5 Bridge — 34 bank rods kept four steelhead and released one steelhead; 14 boats/38 rods kept three steelhead.
Recent trout plants
Fort Borst Pond, Jan. 7 — 2,000 rainbow, 2.40 fish/pound from Goldendale Hatchery.
Klineline Pond, Jan. 11 — 2,000 rainbow, 2.24 fish/pound from Goldendale Hatchery.