salmon fishing Washington fishermen can get the first forecast for 2013 salmon runs during a public meeting in Olympia March 1. The meeting is the annual kickoff of the salmon fishing season-setting process, also known as the North of Falcon process.
Staff members from the state Department of Fish and Wildlife will present initial forecasts that have been compiled by state and tribal biologists. Of interest this year will be discussion of pink salmon runs that make for popular South Sound fishing opportunities.
People attending the meeting also will have an chance to talk to fishery managers about the pre-season forecasts and participate in work sessions focusing on possible salmon fisheries and conservation issues. The sessions look at specific waters such as Puget Sound, Columbia River and Pacific Ocean areas.
The department also scheduled additional public meetings through early April that focus on regional salmon issues.
The North of Falcon process is held in conjunction with public meetings conducted by the Pacific Fishery Management Council, responsible for setting fishing seasons in ocean water three-200 miles off the Pacific coast.
The season setting process name refers to Cape Falcon in northern Oregon, the southern border of active management for Washington salmon stocks.
Among the upcoming meetings is a session March 6-11 at the Hotel Murano in Tacoma at which the council will adopt several options for the ocean fisheries.
Final adoption of the 2013 salmon fisheries is scheduled for April 11 at the council meeting in Portland. Seasons are based on negotiations between the state and treaty tribes.
The March 1 meeting is 9 a.m-3 p.m. in Room 172 of the Natural Resources Building, 1111 Washington St. SE, Olympia.