Gorge anglers anticipate metro influx for Bonneville pool sturgeon

first_imgTHE DALLES, Ore. — Columbia Gorge anglers say they expect to see an invasion from the Portland-Vancouver area come January when sturgeon retention opens in the Bonneville pool of the Columbia River.That’s because sturgeon retention will stay closed in the Columbia River downstream of Bonneville Dam in 2014, making the reservoir upstream of the dam the closest spot to the metropolitan area where a legal-size sturgeon can be kept for the table.“I think the effort shift will be huge,” said Jess Zerfing of Always Catching Guide Service of Cascade Locks at a public meeting here Tuesday with the Oregon and Washington departments of Fish and Wildlife.Sturgeon retention is scheduled to reopen Jan. 1 in the Bonneville, The Dalles and John Day pools.Washington and Oregon are projecting a 20 percent increase in angler effort in Bonneville pool, but admit that the figure is little more than a guess.“We really won’t know until we get there,” said John North of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.Herb Good of Hood River also said a 20 percent estimate of effort shift is too low.“I just sit here and wonder how competent you are,” Good said. “People want to fish that time of year.”North said Bonneville pool is expected to have an annual catch quota of 1,100 sturgeon, with the harvest likely to be split about equally between fishing periods in January and mid-June.last_img

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