Officials OK cut in sport chinook harvest off Washington

A rise in ocean temperatures off the NW coast in 2015 and 2016 cut the chinook’s prime food supplies.

Associated Press

SEATTLE — Officials approve a measure that will sharply cut the sport chinook harvest off Washington’s coasts.

The Seattle Times reports the move Tuesday by the Pacific Fishery Management Council will cap the overall harvest for recreational fishermen off Washington this year at 27,500 fish. That’s nearly a 40 percent drop from the past year.

The chinook salmon are fewer than in years past because of climate conditions that have reduced their rate of survival.

A rise in ocean temperatures off the Northwest coast in 2015 and 2016 knocked back the chinook’s prime food supplies and reduced their survival rates.

Harvests of coho, the other major ocean target for salmon anglers, also will be down substantially.

The limit for sport fishermen in that same zone in 2009 was set at more than 176,000 coho. This year, the council set the catch at 42,000.

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