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>I don't remember saying I supported the plan, not once.
>And I know I'm going to get roasted for my position.
>
>Closures = years of resource mis-management on all levels,
>and then gathering data during the closure period to make
>it look like good science and relevant data.
>
>Let me also clarify this statement . .
>"It's politics at it's best, with a side-helping of money and
>greed".
>
>That statement is meant for everyone involved with diverting
>the
>water for the farmers. Money talks, and the Klamath and it's
>Salmon
>are now suffering. That statement had absolutely ZERO to do
>with
>COASTSIDE!
>
>Sure glad I'm amped for my island trip or I wouldn't have been
>able
>to respond until Sunday. I might have been burnt to a crisp by
>then!
>
>When I can't sleep before a trip, yeah fishing is still for
>me.
>
>John.

I am trying to figure out your position here.

The "Ticehurst Plan" is being proposed by Coaside board member and Pacific Fisheries Management Councel member Darrell Ticehurst. The plan calls for an 18-month suspension of the "floor" number for natural (read wild fish) spawners.

The fundamental problem is that the Council is not counting the return of hatchery fish. Due to the massive fish kills in 2001 and 2002 we are now seeing the impacts on the returning wild fish. It is also important to recognize that there is NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN "WILD" AND HATCHERY SALMON. None. Genetic studies confirm this.

We (Coastside) are saying that we should not be using the "wild" spawner number for fisheries management. It does not work and is based on 30-year old science. However, it is very valuable in that the number of wild spawners is a direct indicator as to the health of the river. We all know how screwed up the Klamath is. We should be using "wild" fish to manage the fish as a whole, from gravel bed to open ocean, not to manage how many we catch in the ocean.

The fish kills in 01/02 were casued from low flows and the wrong time of year that increased water temp and promoted the growth of algae which further increased the levels of some bacteria. When the salmon came in the river and no place to go they were killed by the 10's of thousands. Some estimates were as high as 60,000 with a minimum of 36,000 I believe.

Both the National Academy of Sciences and the Department of Fish and Game have both said that "overfishing has nothing to do with the situation on the Klamath."

Boats fishing out of SF and south catch on average 4 Klamath for every 1000 Sacramento River fish.

The Ticehurst Plan is the only chance we have to save not only our season but the millions of dollars and jobs and business that depend on salmon every year.


Ben Sleeter
Coastside Fishing Club
Political Team
 

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>Thank you Mr Ben Sleeter for clearing up things - at least to
>me.
>
>If I read your position correctly, you believe anomalous
>conditions (both natural and man-made) existed that
>detrimentally impacted the salmon populations. Furthermore,
>the census methods (using wild vs. hatchery) further distorted
>the true conditions. The Ticehurst Plan basically calls for
>NO ACTION until the numbers can be sorted out among all
>interested parties - including the fishing industry - and the
>government agencies are calling for a strong REACTION that
>would negatively impact the lives and families of fishermen.
>
>I would agree that the data needs to be clear before negative
>action is taken.
>

For the most part that is the crutch of our position. Before we decide to put thousands of people on welfare and deny the citizens of California access to what is a very sustainable fishery we need to make sure that decision makes sense both economically and from a resource perspective.

I need to also mention that last years regs were very limiting for salmon - especialy hard hit were the commercial guys. This again was due to the situation on the Klamath. We want last years regs put in place again until the State and Federal govt can come up with a realistic plan that addresses the real issues at hand. We are in no way asking for something that would end up hurting these fish to an even larger degree.

Nobody wants a healthy population of salmon more than us (the Central Valley has been seeing near record runs recently!). This fishery is what keeps recreational fishing going in our corner of the state. We dont have other options to pursue like you guys down south (you guys have it great!). But this problem on the Klamath will not be solved in any way by restricting ocean fishing. These are in-river issues that must be dealt with if "wild" salmon ever stand a chance on the Klamath. So long as California continues to use its land resources the way we do we all better face the fact that salmon hatcheries are not just needed but required. Either that or we just give up on having any salmon at all. (I guess we could all just be happy eating that artifically colored crap thats filled with disease from farm-raised operations.)

I was trying to come up with an analagous situation for southern California today and the best I could do was WSB. Imagine the state closing all WSB fishing because there were not enough "wild" fish (as is probably the case???? I dont know myself) and ignoring the tens of thousands of hatchery fish still available. The thousands (if not millions) of dollars spent on these hatchery programs - nearly all coming from our collective pockets - is nothing but a waste in this situation.

The State and Federal governements are failing us anglers and it is time they be held accountable. It is obvious that big-money politics take a front seat to the actual health of our fisheries and that is a shame.

Ben Sleeter
Coastside Fishing Club
 
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