Anyone fishing on the Columbia River through October needs to make sure their fish doesn’t have a hole in it.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife are saying that they have released Chinook salmon into the river, but due to a drug used when they were moved to the river, they are not safe for human consumption.
WDFW tells KXRO that fall chinook salmon are sedated in a chemical anesthetic, MS-222, during sampling at the Priest Rapids Dam.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires a 21-day withdrawal period for those fish before human consumption.
WDFW staff is applying a ¼-inch diameter hole, punched in the upper lobe of the tail of sampled fish, so that anglers can visually identify fish that must be released.
Salmon marked and released at Priest Rapids Dam may be caught in fisheries both upstream and downstream.
The fish have all been marked.
Anglers are required to release any chinook that have a ¼-inch diameter hole punched in the upper lobe of the tail fin.
This rule remains in effect starting today and runs through Oct. 31, 2017.
This impacts both hatchery and wild salmon.
The fish will primarily be in the Columbia River from the Highway 395 Bridge in Pasco to Chief Joseph Dam.