Nehalem’s Karen Kuntz recognized with Riley Freeman Award for wildlife conservation

Tweet Nehalem’s Karen Kuntz recognized with Riley Freeman Award for wildlife conservation The riparian buffers on Kuntz’s property along Tomlinson Creek keep water temperatures cooler and provide a refuge for juvenile salmonids in the summer. Wednesday, December 13, 2017 SALEM, Ore.—ODFW recognized Nehalem’s Karen Kuntz and her Foley Peak Angus cattle operation with the Riley Freeman award during the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association and Oregon Cattlewomen’s Convention and Tradeshow earlier this month in Bend. Foley Peak Angus raises high quality, grass-fed beef on a 304-acre property in the Nehalem River watershed. The ranch uses an active grazing rotation plan, storm water runoff control, buffer strips along waterways and other efforts as part of a Resource Management System developed with the help of the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Tillamook Soil and Conservation District. Rotational grazing throughout the property has been very effective at maintaining good field conditions and reducing sediment and manure runoff into Tomlinson Creek, which is a tributary of Foley Creek and the Nehalem River. Both sides of the creek have full vegetation, providing good canopy and habitat for wildlife and keeping water temperatures cooler for fish. Native tree plantings of conifers and diverse shrubs have also improved wildlife habitat and provide escape cover, thermal protection and rearing and roost areas for neo-tropical birds. Kuntz’s efforts have paid off for local native wildlife including Roosevelt elk, black-tailed deer, raptors, mustelids, and beavers which benefit from the diverse habitat the ranch provides. Juvenile salmonids also benefit from Kuntz’s stewardship. As they seek cooler water during the summer, the riparian buffers along Tomlinson Creek provide refuge from other areas...

Dec. 12 meeting to discuss new Coos Mtn TMA

Tweet Dec. 12 meeting to discuss new Coos Mtn TMA Monday, December 11, 2017 CENTRAL POINT, Ore.—The Southwest Region Council of the Access and Habitat program will host a second public meeting Dec. 12 at noon to discuss a possible new Travel Management Area to be known as the Coos Mountain TMA within the Tioga Wildlife Management unit. The meeting will be held at ODFW’s Central Point office, 1495 East Gregory Road. Attend in person or call 1-877-336-1831 and enter participant code 804246.  Commercial timberland ownership in the area has shifted in recent years. The new TMA would provide “Welcome to Hunt” access on 63,000 acres so that hunters would have access to more private and public land in the area. TMAs typically involve some motor vehicle restrictions and help regulate access so private landowners are more willing to open their property to hunters. The A&H program funds projects that provide hunter access and/or improve wildlife habitat on private land in Oregon. It’s funded by a $4 surcharge on hunting licenses and big game auction and raffle tag sales. For more information, please contact Jade Keehn, ODFW’s A&H SW Regional Coordinator at jade.e.keehn@state.or.us, (541) 826-8774 x232. ### Contact: Jade Keehn, ODFW’s A&H SW Regional Coordinator, jade.e.keehn@state.or.us, (541) 826-8774 x232 Read more at...

Commission sets groundfish seasons, delays Wolf Plan adoption

Tweet Commission sets groundfish seasons, delays Wolf Plan adoption Friday, December 8, 2017 The bamboo fly rod of Vic Atiyeh SALEM, Ore.—The Fish and Wildlife Commission set regulations for recreational and commercial groundfish seasons today at their meeting in Salem. The state’s regulations are based on federal quotas. After hearing public testimony, the Commission adopted a five fish bag limit (reduced from seven this year), in hopes of providing a year-round fishery in 2018. (The 2017 bag limit design was higher at seven fish, which was not sufficient to provide for year-round fishing, prompting an early closure that disrupted coastal charter businesses and anglers.) The Commission also approved an offshore longleader fishery with a 10-fish bag limit from January-March and October-December (though an April-September season may be added if federal regulations are adopted). Longleader gear can better target offshore rockfish species and lessen pressure on nearshore black rockfish. Further in-season adjustments to groundfish seasons could happen if needed to keep under allowed harvest levels and ODFW is committed to monitoring and reporting effort and catch at more frequent intervals. The cabezon fishery will remain the same (open July 1-Dec. 31 with bag limit of one cabezon). For more details on the 2018 recreational season visit https://myodfw.com/sport-groundfish-seasons-0 ODFW staff presented a working copy of the Draft Updated Wolf Conservation and Management Plan, showing the edits staff have made to the Plan since April 2017 as a result of comments from stakeholders, the public and commissioners. A panel of representatives from Wolf Program stakeholder groups also testified about the latest Plan. The Commission decided more time was needed to work on...

Oregon continues delay of commercial Dungeness crab season coastwide

Tweet Oregon continues delay of commercial Dungeness crab season coastwide Thursday, December 7, 2017 NEWPORT, Ore. – The opening of the commercial Dungeness crab season will be delayed until at least Dec. 31 along the entire Oregon coast as testing shows crabs are still too low in meat yield in some areas of the coast.  The ocean commercial Dungeness crab season in Oregon is targeted to open Dec. 1, but can be delayed to ensure a high-quality product to consumers and to avoid wastage of the resource. Crab quality testing in late November and early December showed that half of the areas still did not meet the criteria for an opening. The delayed opening will allow for crabs to fill with more meat.  Testing will continue to determine if the season should open Dec. 31, be further delayed, or be split into two areas with different opening dates. In conjunction with the delayed ocean commercial season, commercial harvest of Dungeness crab in Oregon bays is now closed for the remainder of the year. The delay in the ocean commercial season at this time is not directly related to the recent recreational crabbing closures that have affected some areas of the coast (currently, south of the north jetty of the Coquille River to California). These closures are due to elevated levels of the biotoxin domoic acid detected in crab. The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) continues to monitor domoic acid levels in crab, and recreational and commercial crabbing in affected areas will remain closed or harvest restrictions will be put in place until test results indicate that crab harvested from...

Recreational crab harvesting reopens on a portion of Oregon coast

Tweet Recreational crab harvesting reopens on a portion of Oregon coast Oregon Department of Agriculture map showing where recreational crab harvesting is now open in Oregon. December 5, 2017 The Oregon Department of Agriculture and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife announce that recreational crabbing is now open from the north jetty of the Coquille River to the Columbia River. An area from Tahkenitch Creek (north of Winchester Bay) to Cape Foulweather (north of Newport) was previously closed due to elevated domoic acid levels. Recent crab samples taken from the area indicate these levels have dropped and remain below the alert level. This reopening of the recreational season applies to crab harvested in the ocean and in bays and estuaries, and on beaches, docks, piers, and jetties. Recreational crab harvesting remains closed along the southern Oregon coast from the north jetty of the Coquille River (including the Coquille estuary) to the California border. Below is a guide for what is currently open and closed for both recreational and commercial crab fishermen. Before crabbing, please confirm the status of ODFW/ODA harvest areas relative to concerns about elevated biotoxins at the website below. Recreational crabbing – Currently open in the ocean and in all bays and estuaries that are not under the health advisory. Commercial ocean crabbing – Delayed in all areas until at least December 16. Commercial bay crabbing – Commercial bay crabbing remains closed in all areas due to the delay in the ocean commercial Dungeness crab fishery. Despite the commercial closure, crab and shellfish products sold in retail markets and restaurants remain safe for consumers.
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Start planning your 2018 outdoor season: Fishing and hunting licenses make great gifts

Tweet Start planning your 2018 outdoor season: Fishing and hunting licenses make great gifts Friday, Dec. 1, 2017 SALEM, Ore.—The new 2018 Oregon Sport Fishing and 2018 Oregon Big Game Hunting Regulations  should now be available at outdoor stores and ODFW offices, or find them online at www.eregulations.com or through our new recreation website MyODFW.com. As of today (Dec. 1, 2017), 2018 licenses and tags are also on sale at license sales agents, most ODFW offices, and online. Fishing and hunting licenses make great gifts, especially for kids. Youth age 12-17 can fish (including. Columbia River Endorsement), hunt, crab and clam all year for $10 with the Youth License, or gift the Sports Pac ($55) and add all major hunting and fishing tags/validations including deer, elk, turkey, bear, cougar,  and combined angling tag. ODFW’s special big game hunt raffle tickets also make great stocking stuffers ($4.50-$11.50 for chance to win a special deer, elk, bighorn sheep, pronghorn or Rocky Mountain goat tag). To give a license, tag or other document as a gift, you need the hunter or angler’s full name and date of birth (day, month, year). If the person has had a license before, make sure you have their ODFW hunter/angler ID number which is found at the top of their license and stays the same every year. If you are purchasing for someone who has never had a license, you will need to provide their social security number in compliance with Federal and State Laws.  What’s New for 2018 Big Game Hunting: New in the 2018 regulations, significant changes are in yellow highlighted text not red...