Fishery managers from Oregon and Washington scheduled two days of recreational white sturgeon fishing on the Columbia River below Bonneville Dam during the month of October.
Approved sturgeon retention days are Saturday, Oct. 21 and Thursday, Oct. 26. The open area is the mainstem Columbia from the Wauna power lines, located 40 miles from the river mouth, upstream to the fishing deadline near Bonneville Dam. This fishery is subject to a harvest guideline of 1,245 legal-sized white sturgeon.
Legal retention size is 44- to 50-inch fork length. The bag limit is one legal-sized white sturgeon per day, and no more than two for the year. If anglers have already retained two white sturgeon in 2017 they may not retain any in these openers. By permanent regulation, all sturgeon fishing is restricted to one single-point, barbless hook.
This is the first sturgeon retention season between Wauna and Bonneville since 2013. From 2014-2016 the lower Columbia and Willamette rivers were closed to retention due to concerns about legal-size sturgeon abundance. The number of legal-sized sturgeon has improved since then. Based on this improvement, anglers asked the fish and wildlife commissions from both states to look into the possibility of reopening a limited white sturgeon fishery.
The Willamette River from the falls to the river mouth, including Multnomah Channel, remains closed to sturgeon retention. The Gilbert River remains closed to all angling.