Washington Halibut Season Catch Stats & Available Quota Announced

According to WDFW bottomfish managers the average size of halibut inside Puget Sound waters is 26 pounds compared to ocean fish that weigh just over 16 pounds average. The creel checks for Puget Sound for the second opener totaled 120 fish. The expansion factor for Puget Sound was just over 2.8. Weather was a major factor in reducing pressure on the 25th, especially in the Port Angeles/Sequim area where winds, waves and fast currents made it nearly impossible to catch halibut.

The reports can be found here:   https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/creel/halibut/

Puget Sound halibut anglers will likely get at least two more days fishing, possibly more if catch rates don’t improve. possible openers are: Thursday, June 7; Saturday, June 9; Saturday, June 16; Thursday, June 21; Saturday, June 23; Thursday, June 28; and Saturday June 30

Also note, WDFW has always boasted and bragged about their fish checking methods at the docks. Common sense says a fish checker should check boats for fish, right? Well they don’t, they check every fourth boat unless it is a charter, which always gets checked. This does not make sense. If you employ fish checkers why not check every boat and every fish? Not checking every boat contributes to the high expansion catch factor, which includes truck/trailer counts, aerial counts etc. WDFW might claim the ramps are to busy to check everyone but I think that is an excuse. Ramps do get crowded, but it takes time for boats to come out of the water. And if waiting a little longer is what it takes to get more accurate numbers recreational anglers should understand this and help with the process. Next year WDFW might, with enough pressure from recreational anglers, come up with a faster catch reporting system. Keep your fingers crossed.

Below are the current halibut catch numbers from WDFW

2018 Juan de Fuca Strait & Puget Sound Recreational Halibut

Puget Sound Recreational Halibut
Fishing Dates Anglers
(#)
Halibut
(#)
Pounds Cumulative Quota
Remaining
May 11, 13 6,468 598 14,080 14,080 46,915
May 25, 27 4,123 339 8,957 23,037 37,958

2018 North Coast Halibut Fishery

North Coast Recreational Halibut
Fishing Dates Anglers
(#)
Halibut
(#)
Pounds Cumulative
(lbs.)
Quota Remaining
(lbs.)
May 11, 13 2,981 1,534 25,994 25,994 85,638
May 24, 27 2,758 1,894 32,041 58,035 53,597

2018 South Coast Halibut Fishery

Primary Halibut Season
Fishing Dates Anglers
(#)
Halibut
(#)
Halibut Caught (lbs.) Quota
Remaining
May 11, 13 1,043 809 14,440 29,901
May 24, 27 1,643 1,460 24,797 5,104

About John L. Beath

John Beath is a writer, photographer, videographer, blogger, tackle manufacturer & Captain at Whaler's Cove Lodge in Southeast Alaska. He is also owner of www.halibut.net and host at Lets Talk Outdoors @ www.youtube.com/jbeath
This entry was posted in Puget Sound Halibut Fishing, Strait of Juan de Fuca Halibut Fishing, Uncategorized, Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, Washington Halibut Fishing, Washington Halibut Regs. Bookmark the permalink.

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