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Fish & Wildlife: Lake Cushman is closed to fishing

Shelton-Mason County Journal of Shelton, Washington

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Lake Cushman is one of five freshwater lakes that are now closed to fishing until the state Department of Fish & Wildlife and regional tribes reapply for a federal permit.

The closure of the lakes, effective May 1, lines up with the closure of the Puget Sound to salmon and steelhead fishing.

Washington state Department of Fish & Wildlife (WDFW) officials said they are closing state fisheries in waters where salmon migrate while they work to secure the federal permit required to hold salmon fisheries in Puget Sound.

"Since we didn't reach an agreement with treaty tribal co-managers on this year's Puget Sound salmon fisheries, we have to close fishing in areas where we know salmon will be," said Ron Warren, head of WDFWs Fish Program.

However, many fishing opportunities remain available in and around Puget Sound. WDFW has posted a list of almost 100 rivers and sections of rivers that are open to fishing on its web-page at

Washington, Sammamish, Monte Cristo and Barney lakes will also close to fishing during the time it takes to reapply for a permit.

Monday's action also applies to Puget Sound-area rivers that typically open to fishing in early June, though fishery managers will be evaluating those rivers to determine whether any can open on schedule.

All non-tribal commercial and recreational Puget Sound salmon and steelhead fisheries also closed May 1 to salmon and steelhead fishing until further notice.

The department is working with federal authorities and doing everything possible to re-open Puget Sound marine and freshwater fisheries, Warren said.

"We regret having to close these fisheries," Warren said. "We know this is a hardship on many communities around Puget Sound and disappoints many anglers."

In the meantime, Warren urged anglers to consider trying new fishing waters, emphasizing that most Puget Sound area lowland lakes remain open to fishing.

He said recreational fisheries in Puget Sound marine areas that are not affected by the closures include bot-tomfish, such as lingcod, Pacific cod and cabezon, as well as sea-run cutthroat trout and halibut.

Anglers should check the 2015-16 Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet available online at for details.

Salmon fishing will continue as scheduled in the Columbia River and Washington's ocean waters and north coastal rivers.

Information on those fisheries can be found on WDFWs webpage at

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Original Publication Date: May 5, 2016

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