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Pinks beginning to arrive in Whidbey waters
Anglers, get your Buzz Bombs and Coyote spoons ready, the long-awaited arrival of pink salmon has begun at a few locations around Whidbey Island.
Several reports have been received of anglers reeling in fish at the popular Admiralty Inlet site near Keystone, and also off the beach at Deception Pass.
Also reports are coming in of several limits being caught at “The Hole” below Deception Pass Bridge.
“Overall, salmon fishing has been fair out on the Sound,” said John Long, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s statewide salmon manager. “I’ve heard recent reports of anglers in the region landing some nice chinook, particularly in marine areas 9 and 10.”
Anglers fishing marine areas 9, Admiralty Inlet, and 10 Seattle/Bremerton, have a daily limit of two salmon, plus two additional pink salmon, but must release wild chinook. Those fishing marine area 9 and 10 are also required to release chum salmon.
Anglers also can fish in Marine Area 7, the San Juan Islands, where salmon fishing has been good recently. Those fishing area 7 have a daily limit of two salmon, plus two additional pink salmon, but can only keep one chinook. Anglers fishing the area must release wild coho and chum.
Long said anglers will have more options in marine areas 8-1, Deception Pass, Hope Island and Skagit Bay; and 8-2, Port Susan and Port Gardner. Anglers fishing those areas have a daily limit of two salmon, plus two additional pink salmon, but must release chinook.
“We’re starting to see pink salmon show up in the catch throughout north Puget Sound,” said Steve Thiesfeld, a fish biologist for WDFW. “In the next couple of weeks, I expect we’ll see more and more pink salmon push into the region.”
A portion of Puget Sound stretching from Shipwreck to Mukilteo known as “Humpy Hollow,” should be a good bet in the next few weeks for anglers who want to catch pink salmon, Thiesfeld said. Fish biologists are predicting 5.1 million pink salmon, also known as “humpies,” will enter Puget Sound this year.
For freshwater anglers, only a few days remain to catch and keep chinook on the Skagit River. The Skagit is open through Aug. 9 from the mouth of the river to the mouth of Gilligan Creek from noon Thursday through Sunday. Anglers have a daily limit of two salmon, only one of which may be an adult chinook, but must release coho and chum.
A portion of the Skagit River re-opens Aug. 16 for salmon fishing. The Skagit will be open from the mouth of the river to the Dalles Bridge at Concrete. Anglers will have a daily limit of two salmon, plus two additional pink salmon, but must release chinook and chum.
The Snohomish and a portion of the Skykomish River also open for salmon Aug. 16. Anglers fishing those rivers will have a daily limit of two salmon, plus two additional pink salmon, but must release chinook.
Before heading out for a day of fishing, anglers should check the rules and regulations for all fisheries on WDFW’s Web site at wdfw.wa.gov/fish/regs/fishregs.htm.