Treaty Fishing on the Stillaguamish

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Jason Griffith, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. skyrise

    skyrise Active Member

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    Jason, thanks for the info. And the phone number for poachers.
    And for the restrictions put on the Chum run (self imposed).
    just wish the State had the same attitude about Chum on the Skykomish that you all have. hope to count more than 6 spawned Chum this year than i did last year.
    maybe you would have some insight on that. Sorry to get off track.
     
  2. aplTyler

    aplTyler Inept Steelheader

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    And the balance is restored to WFF... for now.

    Nice posts by all!
     
  3. Fishlikeyoumeanit

    Fishlikeyoumeanit New Member

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    Wow, looks like I missed a bit tonight. Jason, thanks for the info. Hearing people "in the know" put out good information is comforting to say the least. Shows that people care. I would hope that the younger tribal members (and non-tribal members) have it instilled in them that this is bigger than them or what they can get away with in the early am. This has to be about growing and sustaining these fisheries for all of us. For now and many years to come. People need to know that there are eyes out there that are not going to put up with illegal fishing, littering, fill in the blank. If you show people you give a shit, it may stick with them.
    Fish on!
     
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  4. Jamie Wilson

    Jamie Wilson Active Member

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    Jason - thanks for the info. I am also interested in how any bi-catch is handled. Specifically steelhead during the chum season.
    Any insight here??
    Jamie
     
  5. TD

    TD Active Member

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    I almost didn't open this thread because I assumed it was going to be another 8 pages of bantering. The word "Treaty" vs. "Tribe" in the title eventually brought me around to opening it. I'm glad I did. I learned quite a bit. Thank you Jason for stepping up on a public forum to talk on this subject. That takes courage and a good heart. Also, extend our thanks to whoever guided you to this site.
     
  6. Mike

    Mike Active Member

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    Jason,

    That comment is the key to this discussion in my opinion. As long as the tribes use gill nets to harvest indiscriminately, I will have issue with them. There are methods to harvest selectively. These methods along with habitat improve will truly allow a river to be a viable and complete environmental system once again.

    While we can all work together to improve the habitat, as you stated it is up to the tribes to decide how they harvest. When tribal by catch is eliminated, I will start believing what I hear.
     
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  7. Jason Griffith

    Jason Griffith Active Member

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    Mr. Pounder- Your beef lies with the Supreme Court and the US govt. The US signed a treaty with the Tribes guaranteeing them the right to hunt and fish in their usual and accustomed areas, in common with the people of the land. The court interpreted this as 50%, and it has been settled for a good while now. You might not be happy about it, but it isn't going to change anytime soon.

    We take into account "that many fish" when we are planning for preseason and track it in season. Coho are healthy on the Stilly and they can handle harvest and still be productive for generations to come. I know it is hard for folks to wrap their mind around, but sport impacts are significant too, just diffuse and not in your face. We have 5 guys or so out fishing (yes, with nets), how many non-treaty folks are impacting Stilly Coho in the river and salt? For many years (and this year is no exception), our netting has never been the majority of impact on Stilly CO, when you look at all the Stilly fish harvested from AK on down.
     
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  8. Jason Griffith

    Jason Griffith Active Member

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    What "by catch" are you referring to? You can be selective by when you choose to fish in the river. The species come into the river at different times and we limit our impacts by the weeks we fish and the mesh size we use. For example we have only caught a handful of CK (<10) and and one chum during CO mgmt this year (I don't have the numbers right in front of me at home). The CK impacts during CO are included in the preseason planning so that the total ER doesn't go above 0.15 in all (treaty and non) southern US fisheries.

    I think folks blow the by-catch thing way out of proportion. The real problem is fishing in mixed stock areas (i.e. the Sound). It is very difficult to protect the weak stocks in that environment. We would manage a lot more effectively if all fisheries took place in the river.
     
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  9. Jason Griffith

    Jason Griffith Active Member

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    All fish retained in treaty fisheries (even take home ones that aren't sold) are counted and reported on fish tickets. I can post the final numbers after each mgmt period if folks would find that interesting. It is probably fewer than you think.

    Typically very few STLHD are caught during Chum mgmt, but I would need to go into the database to give exact numbers (~<10). Most, if not all, are hatchery STLHD. We typically have a small STLHD fishery in Dec. and early Jan that targets the hatchery run. We stop in mid-January to let the wild fish up. The Tribes (Tulalip, Stilly) have agreed to not have a directed fishery for Stillaguamish summer stlhd, and instead take their summer allocation out of the winter hatchery run.
     
  10. dflett68

    dflett68 Active Member

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    there are nearly 21,000 members of this forum. how can you possibly suggest that you know, even roughly, what percentage of them disagree with you on this issue? how can you learn anything when you already know everything?
     
  11. Jamie Wilson

    Jamie Wilson Active Member

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    "We stop in mid-January to let the wild fish up."

    And unfortunately so do we!!
     
  12. Chris Johnson

    Chris Johnson Member: Native Fish Society

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    [

    Lastly, the Stillaguamish Tribe cares about the salmon and steelhead populations on the river just as much as the rest of you on this site, if not more. They have undertaken decades of habitat, harvest, and hatchery projects aimed at rebuilding the wild runs on the Stillaguamish. Rather than go down the road of massive hatchery production, they have focused on rebuilding the wild runs, and have limited their harvest opportunities accordingly. Just like you, they have a vested interest in seeing the runs improve (50% of any increase, eh?), and take the long view. While not necessarily obvious, catching less (or no) fish doesn't always lead to larger run sizes. If the habitat is in poor shape, letting more fish spawn won't lead to increased long term production.


    Thank you Jason, posts like this can go a long way toward increased understanding between the stakeholders. The above paragraph should be a model for every watershed in Puget Sound. If we can stop pointing fingers @ everyone else, and together deal with the realities of the situations before us, maybe we can make that happen!
     
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  13. cuponoodle breakfast

    cuponoodle breakfast la flama blanca

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    Maybe those younger members need more practice? Doesn't look like they've got the hang of it yet.
    And yes, I called it in.
     

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  14. stilly stalker

    stilly stalker Tuna sniffer

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    You know what Id like to see amongst ALL tribal fishing groups? Tribal crackdown and punishment for those who KNOWINGLY disregard the regulations and choose to use their allowed gear in an illegal manner. Happens on EVERY river, and there is a STRONG TRADITION of tribal elders doling out wrist slaps for what would be jailable offenses for non tribal members.
     
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  15. underachiever

    underachiever !

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    Someone call the whambulance!! Hopefully all sport fishers don't get classified as poachers because some poachers use those methods.

    For the record, I'd like to see a crackdown on all poachers. A poacher is a poacher regardless of how they're doing it.
     
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