But last week, state Department of Fish and Game officials voted to ban salmon fishing in state waters, which extend out three miles from shore. Five days before, the Pacific Fishery Management Council had banned salmon fishing in the 200-mile-wide swath of federal waters off California and Oregon.90%. Oy.
Federal and state biologists believe closing the season for virtually all the West Coast before it even revs up is the only way to boost the number of chinook salmon returning from ocean waters to spawn in the Sacramento River this fall.
Last year was the second-lowest spawning season on record along the Sacramento River and its tributaries. Just 90,000 chinook returned from the sea to complete their life cycle in the freshwater – a 90 percent drop from five years earlier.