Saturday, April 16, 2011

2011 California Ocean Salmon Fishing Season

For the first time in many years the forecast suggests that in 2011, California anglers may enjoy good salmon fishing.

Both the California Fish and Game Commission (FGC) and the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) approved the April 2 opening date based on scientific information suggesting that the Sacramento River Fall Chinook ocean population size is more than 700,000 fish.

According to FGC, ocean recreational seasons will be as follows:

The Klamath Management Zone from the Oregon border to Horse Mountain
will be open from May 14 through Sept. 5. 

The waters from Horse Mountain to Point Arena will remain open
through Oct. 30. 

The waters from Point Arena to Pigeon Point will remain open through
Oct. 30.

The waters from Pigeon Point to the United States/Mexico border will
remain open through Sept. 18.

The retention of coho salmon and steelhead remains prohibited California's ocean fisheries. Sacramento River fall chinook generally comprise 80 to 90 percent of the salmon catch in ocean waters off California.

In 2008 and 2009, virtually no fishing was allowed because of low abundance forecasts and poor returns
of fish to the Sacramento River Basin. In 2009, the return of adult Sacramento River Fall Chinook salmon was an all-time low of approximately 39,500 fish. Fishing in 2010 was also constrained for the same reasons.

For complete regulations as well as additional information on the 2011 fishing season, visit:

Anglers can also call the Ocean Salmon Hotline at (707) 576-3429

In addition to recreational fishing regulations, the PFMC has also defined commercial seasons. Information on west coast salmon commercial seasons, quotas, minimum size and gear restrictions can be found on the PFMC Web site at:

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