Willamette River Fisheries
Fisheries in the Willamette River Basin for salmon, steelhead, and other species are addressed through Fishery Management and Evaluation Plans.
Salmon and steelhead fisheries in the Willamette River Basin include those in the Willamette River (above and below Willamette Falls) and in all major tributaries. The most popular fisheries occur in the Santiam, McKenzie, and Middle Fork Willamette rivers; where returning hatchery fish are abundant.
All salmon and steelhead fisheries require the release of natural-origin spring Chinook salmon and winter steelhead (both listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act). In addition, important spawning and rearing areas for salmon and steelhead are closed to fishing. These regulations ensure impacts from fishing are low on these protected salmon and steelhead.
Fisheries also occur for other species like rainbow and cutthroat trout, kokanee, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, sturgeon, and other game species throughout the Willamette River basin in streams, rivers, and lakes.
All impacts from fishing on ESA-listed salmon and steelhead are authorized by Fishery Management and Evaluation Plans (FMEPs) and implemented by the State of Oregon. NMFS continues to review these fisheries to ensure compliance with the Endangered Species Act.
For more information on Willamette Basin salmon and steelhead fisheries, please contact Lance Kruzic, Anadromous Production and Inland Fisheries Branch of the WCR Sustainable Fisheries Division, firstname.lastname@example.org, (541) 957-3381.