Salmon Preseason Report II, Including Public Hearing Schedule Available on Council’s Website

Thursday, March 24th, 2016

Preseason Report II:  Proposed Alternatives and Environmental Assessment Part 2 for 2016 Ocean Salmon Fishery Regulations

The document Preseason Report II: Proposed Alternatives and Environmental Assessment Part 2 for 2016 Ocean Salmon Fishery Regulations; Regulation Identifier Number 0648-BF56 has been posted to the Council’s website. Please visit the 2016 Preseason Report II webpage to view and download the document.

Public Comment Opportunities on the Proposed Management Alternatives

The Council solicits public comments on the proposed management Alternatives in preparation for adopting final management recommendations at its April meeting. Oral and written comments on the proposed management Alternatives may be presented at the public hearings listed below (you may also see the “Salmon Public Hearings” notice on our website):

Monday, March 28, 2016
Chateau Westport
Beach Room
710 W Hancock
Westport, WA 98595
Driving Directions

Monday, March 28, 2016
Red Lion Hotel
South Umpqua Room
1313 N Bayshore Drive
Coos Bay, OR 97420
Driving Directions

Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Motel 6
Convention Room
400 S. Main St.
Fort Bragg, CA 95437
Driving Directions

Additional comment will be accepted during the April Council meeting. Written comments received at the Council office by 11:59 PM, Sunday, April 3, 2016 will be copied and distributed to all Council members.

For further information regarding the salmon management documents, please contact: Mr. Mike Burner at 503-820-2414 or toll free 1-866-806-7204, ext. 414.


March 2016 Council Decision Summary Document Online

Thursday, March 17th, 2016

The Pacific Fishery Management Council met March 9-14, 2016 in Sacramento, California. The March 2016 Council Meeting Decision Summary Document contains the highlights of significant decisions made at that meeting. Results of agenda items that do not reach a level of highlight significance are typically not described in the Decision Summary Document.


Council Chooses Options for 2016 Salmon Season

Monday, March 14th, 2016

Sacramento, California – The Pacific Fishery Management Council yesterday adopted three public review alternatives for the 2016 salmon season off the West Coast of the United States. The Council will select a final alternative at their next meeting in Vancouver, Washington on April 9-14. Detailed information about season starting dates, areas open, and catch limits for all three alternatives are available on the Council’s website at “The mix of salmon runs this year is unusual,” said outgoing Executive Director Donald McIsaac. “In the north, the return of fall Chinook to the Columbia River is forecast to be exceptionally high again, but expectations for wild coho runs to the Washington Coast and Puget Sound areas can only be described as disastrous. In the south, the Sacramento River fall Chinook are healthy, but Klamath River fall Chinook are so poor that the Council’s policy calls for a low ‘de minimis’ catch in ocean fisheries.” “This will be a challenging year for salmon fisheries. Several key stocks are less abundant than usual due to environmental conditions like the California drought and El Niño, which have affected ocean abundance for some stocks. However, there are alternatives that provide opportunities for both commercial and recreational salmon fishing coastwide,” said Council Vice-Chair Herb Pollard.

Northern Oregon and Washington (north of Cape Falcon)

Sport season alternatives

Ocean sport fishery options north of Cape Falcon in Oregon and off the Washington coast are focused on Chinook salmon this year, with mark-selective Chinook fishing alternatives for June; and July-August fisheries, which are not mark-selective. Chinook recreational quotas range from 30,000 to 58,600. For coho, one alternative allows modest coastwide opportunity for 37,800 hatchery coho in July and August. One alternative permits limited coho fishing only in the Columbia River area between Cape Falcon and Leadbetter Point, with a coho quota of 14,700 hatchery coho that starts in late June and runs into September. One alternative is closed to all non-Indian recreational and commercial fishing north of Cape Falcon in response to concerns over extremely low forecasts. In a year like this, it is appropriate to see the effects of complete protection for key Washington coastal and Puget Sound wild coho stocks.

Commercial season options

Non-Indian ocean commercial fishery alternatives north of Cape Falcon include traditional Chinook seasons between May and September. Chinook quotas for all areas and times range from 30,000 to 56,000, compared to 67,000 in 2015. Only one commercial fishery alternative allows retention of coho, with a quota of 7,200 marked coho (compared to 19,200 in 2015).

Tribal ocean fisheries north of Cape Falcon

Alternative Chinook and coho quotas for tribal ocean fisheries range from quotas of 30,000 to 50,000 for Chinook salmon, while coho quotas range from 0 to 40,000. Seasons open May 1 and run through August or September 15. The zero coho quota alternative for the tribal ocean fishery reflects concern over the very low forecasts for key Washington coastal and Puget Sound wild coho stocks.

 California and southern Oregon (south of Cape Falcon) 

Sport season options

California ocean sport fishing alternatives provide seasons that range from fairly continuous traditional seasons to more conservative alternatives with mid-season closures or shortened seasons to protect Klamath River fall Chinook or Sacramento River winter Chinook.

Chinook directed Klamath Management Zone alternatives (Humbug Mt., Oregon to Horse Mt., California) generally open in May and run through Labor Day (except that one alternative closes August 31), and all alternatives have closed periods to reduce impacts on Klamath River fall Chinook.

Alternatives for Oregon Chinook fishing in the Tillamook, Newport, and Coos Bay areas all open March 15 and run either continuously through October 31 or are closed May through August.

Oregon ocean recreational alternatives include mark-selective coho fishing seasons starting in June or July and run through July or into early August in the area between Cape Falcon and the Oregon/California border. Quotas range from 15,000 to 30,000 marked coho. In addition, non-mark-selective fisheries are proposed for the area between Cape Falcon and Humbug Mt. in September with quotas ranging from 6,000 to 10,000 coho.

Commercial season options

From the north, commercial Chinook salmon season alternatives in the Tillamook, Newport, and Coos Bay area open April 8 and run through September or October but have several closed periods.

Oregon season alternatives in the Brookings area of the Klamath Management Zone are generally open for Chinook most of April and May, and one alternative includes small quota fisheries in June, July, and August.

California commercial season alternatives in the Klamath Management Zone north of the Humboldt South Jetty include two small quota (3,000 and 1,000) fisheries in September, and one alternative with no fishing.

Commercial season alternatives south of the Klamath Management Zone are generally closed in July to protect Klamath fall Chinook. Open periods are all or part of May, and depending on the area, all or parts of June, August, and September, with fewer open periods to the south to protect Sacramento River winter Chinook.

Management Process

Public hearings to receive input on the options are scheduled for March 28 in Westport, Washington and Coos Bay, Oregon; and for March 29 in Fort Bragg, California. The Council will consult with scientists, hear public comment, and revise preliminary decisions until it chooses a final option at its meeting April 9-14 in Vancouver, Washington.

At its April meeting in Vancouver, the Council will narrow these options to a single season recommendation to be forwarded to National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) for their final approval before May 1.

All Council meetings are open to the public.

Council Role

The Pacific Fishery Management Council is one of eight regional fishery management councils established by the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976 for the purpose of managing fisheries 3-200 miles offshore of the United States of America coastline. The Pacific Council recommends management measures for fisheries off the coasts of California, Oregon, and Washington.



On the Web ·

Draft Alternative for 2016 salmon management

Final Alternatives and analyses of the biological and socioeconomic impacts will be posted on the Council web page in the near future.

Description of 2016 salmon management process

Fact sheet: Salmon

Fact sheet: Common Terms Used in Salmon Management


Council-Adopted Salmon Management Measures (Tables) for Public Review

Monday, March 14th, 2016

DRAFT Council-Adopted Salmon Management Measures (Tables) for Public Review

The following DRAFT salmon management measure tables were adopted by the Council for public review at their March 2016 meeting.  Please keep in mind the tables are DRAFT until published in Preseason Report II.  (tentatively scheduled for March 23).



Thursday, March 10th, 2016

Cautionary Note — These preliminary motions do not represent the final official administrative record.  The motions and amendments contained in this blog are as projected on the screen at the Council meeting at the time of the Council vote and often use expedited language and references without the benefit of any final editing or proofing.  They may use short-hand language or abbreviations that may not be clear without the context of verbal comments and clarifications made during their development at the meeting, or may contain inadvertent transposition errors.  They have not been approved by the Council to represent the final official record of Council action.  The final official record will be posted on the Council website after the Council approves the full meeting record at a future Council meeting.


March 2016 Council Meeting Internet Live Stream

Friday, March 4th, 2016

The March 2016 Council meeting will be live‐streamed on the internet during the following hours:

  • Wednesday, March 9, 2016:  Approximate start time will be 9:00 AM Pacific Time (pending on conclusion of a Closed Executive Session), ending at approximately 6:00 PM PT or when business for the day is complete
  • Thursday, March 10, 2016 through Monday, March 14, 2016:  8:00 AM Pacific Time, ending daily at approximately 6:00 PM PT or when business for the day is complete

Only the audio portion and presentations displayed on the screen at the Council meeting will be broadcast. The audio portion is listen‐only; you will be unable to speak to the Council via the broadcast.

For agenda item topics, please see the March 2016 agenda.

Join the meeting in “listen-only” mode

Join the meeting in “listen-only” mode by visiting this link:

  2. Enter the Webinar ID – The March 9-14, 2016 Webinar ID is: 112-257-227
  3. Please enter your email address (required)

Participants can use their computer’s speakers (VoIP) or telephone. (See the PFMC GoToMeeting Audio Diagram for best practices).  Since this is a “listen only” broadcast, you may use your computer speakers or headset to listen.

If you do not have a headset or computer speakers, you may use your telephone for the audio portion of the meeting by dialing this TOLL number 1-631-992-3221; phone audio access code 788-106-977 (not a toll-free number); then enter the audio pin shown after joining the webinar. The webinar is broadcast in “listen only” mode.

Technical Information

System Requirements

  • PC-based attendees: Required: Windows® 7, Vista, or XP
  • Mac®-based attendees: Required: Mac OS® X 10.5 or newer
  • Mobile attendees: Required: iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phone or Android tablet (See the GoToMeeting Webinar Apps)

You may send an email to Mr. Kris Kleinschmidt for technical assistance.

MP3 Audio Files

Approximately three business days after the meeting has ended, you may visit the “Past Meetings” webpage where you will find links to the MP3 and WAV files.


Salmon Preseason Report I Available on Council’s Website

Friday, February 26th, 2016

The document Preseason Report I: Stock Abundance Analysis and Environmental Assessment Part 1 for 2016 Ocean Salmon Fishery Regulations has been posted to the Council’s website. Please visit the 2016 Preseason Report I webpage to view and download the document.

For further information regarding the salmon management documents, please contact: Mr. Mike Burner at 503-820-2414 or toll free 1-866-806-7204, ext. 414.


CANCELLED: March 2, 2016 Webinar of the Groundfish Electronic Monitoring Policy and Technical Advisory Committees

Thursday, February 25th, 2016

The joint webinar meeting of the Council’s Ad Hoc Trawl Groundfish Electronic Monitoring Policy Advisory Committee (GEMPAC) and Groundfish Electronic Monitoring Technical Advisory Committee (GEMTAC), scheduled for Wednesday, March 2, 2016, has been cancelled. A rescheduling of the meeting is currently being considered. The webinar has been cancelled because critical information and review materials are undergoing an internal review by the National Marine Fisheries Service and will not be available by March 2. The purpose of the meeting was to review and comment on draft regulations to implement the Pacific Council’s electronic monitoring (EM) policies for the limited entry groundfish midwater trawl whiting fishery, and the limited entry fixed gear fishery fishing under the non-trawl shorebased individual fishing quota (IFQ) program.

The GEMPAC and GEMTAC is scheduled to meet in person on April 8, 2016, from 8am to 5pm, at the Council meeting in Vancouver, WA. At the April meeting, the Committees are scheduled to provide recommendations to the Council regarding the Council’s preferred alternatives for an EM program for the IFQ fixed gear fishery and the draft regulations for the whiting and fixed gear fisheries EM programs.

If you have additional questions regarding the cancelled webinar, please contact Mr. Brett Wiedoff at 503-820-2424; toll-free 1-866-806-7204; ext. 424.


March 2016 Briefing Book Available Online

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016

The Briefing Book for the March 2016 Council meeting has been posted to the Council’s website on the “Briefing Book” webpage. The Briefing Book contains “situation summaries” (brief summaries that provide background for each agenda item), reports and materials for each agenda item, and written public comment. Advisory body and committee agendas and memos are also available.


Review of 2015 Ocean Salmon Fisheries available online

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

The Council’s annual review of 2015 ocean salmon fisheries is available online. The review document provides a summary of important biological and socioeconomic data from which to assess the impacts of past management actions, determine how well management objectives are being met, and improve regulations for the future. The Council will formally review this report at its March meeting prior to the development of management alternatives for the approaching fishing season.