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3 thoughts on “Talks begin on salmon seasons, with orcas nearby

  1. Chris – thanks once again for keeping the public appraised of everything orca. There was another story in the press not long ago that I thought added an important dimension to the issue of ever increasing competition for diminishing salmon. There was a recent finding that something like 70% of the timber harvests on State lands violated the terms of the permit that were designed to protect the likes of Chinook salmon. Much of the blame was placed on the lack of resources available for enforcement. While the State’s budget continues its downward spiral, I recall that even during the “good o’l days” the National Marine Fisheries Service had something like 5 enforcement officers to cover the entire NW region – from water rights, forestry practices, dam operations, fishing to whale watching. If the government is going to seek further curtailments of sport, commercial and tribal fishing activities they better be sure the activities they claim to be already regulated are. Otherwise, it makes it hard justify further sacrifices. Fisheries can be managed successfully if habitats are protected as Alaska and Canada continue to demonstrate.

  2. “The surprise February visit to Washington from members of J pod came just days after state and tribal leaders learned they may again have to cut back salmon fishing to boost the endangered whales’ survival….”

    Sorry I have to ask but why wouldn’t they migrate to better fishing grounds for survival?

    “There was a recent finding that something like 70% of the timber harvests on State lands violated the terms of the permit that were designed to protect the likes of Chinook salmon.”

    Wouldn’t there be huge fines for anyone violating the terms of the permit making further violating less financially attractive?

    Thank you… Sharon O’Hara

  3. Fred,
    I agree with you on both the need to protect habitat and the need for fisheries enforcement, which is required regardless of harvest levels.

    With tight budgets, one idea I have been promoting for years is to enlist waterfront residents in a system of fisheries observations. All it would take is a website that indicates where various fisheries are open and closed on any given day.

    To make reporting efficient, I would propose “block captains” for each area. These would be people who neighbors would call when illegal activities are suspected. These block captains would gather the information and serve as trusted contacts for enforcement officers.

    It would take a little effort to organize the observation system, but it would help enforcement officers make the best use of their time. Reports and responses could be posted on the same website mentioned above. Ultimately, I believe deterrence would be one of the greatest benefits of the system.

    The success of Orca Network in reporting the presence of whales in Puget Sound demonstrates that this kind of observation system could be effective during fishing season.

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