WDFW seeks local applicants for ad-hoc coastal steelhead advisory group

Fishery managers with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) are seeking local applicants for an ad-hoc advisory group to help develop management plans for the state’s coastal steelhead populations and fisheries.

This advisory group is one component of outreach WDFW is conducting to help guide the current and future management of steelhead stocks on coastal river systems. 

The advisory group will help “develop a plan to protect native and hatchery produced steelhead for each river system” of Grays Harbor, Willapa Bay, and the coastal Olympic peninsula, as required by the Washington Legislature in the 2021-23 budget. 

The Department will submit that plan to the Legislature by the end of 2022.

“This advisory group will play a key role by providing input on the development of a long-term management strategy for coastal steelhead,” said Kelly Cunningham, director of WDFW’s Fish Program. “These fish and fisheries are critical to coastal communities, and the conservation and long-term sustainability of these stocks are paramount.”

The work of the 12-member advisory group will be partly modeled after the Puget Sound Steelhead Advisory Group, which helped develop the Quicksilver monitoring and evaluation package for Puget Sound steelhead.

Advisors will be selected based on their knowledge of steelhead fisheries and life history, willingness to engage in the management process, and their ability to communicate with fishery managers, any constituent groups they represent, and other advisors and organizations.

Individuals may self-apply or be nominated by a group or another individual. All nominations should be accompanied by a letter expressing the nominee’s interest in the role, including credentials or a resume outlining their qualifications for the advisory group. 

Nominations should also include:

  • Name, address, telephone number, and e-mail address of nominee.
  • If applicable, the individual or organization submitting the nomination.
  • Affiliations with guide or charter groups, or other fishery- and/or conservation-related organizations.

Nominations can be submitted to Cathy Davidson, WDFW Fish Program, at P.O. Box 43200, Olympia, WA, 98504, or by email at [email protected].

The first review of applicants will occur on Friday, Sept. 10. Depending on the number of applicants and level of interest, additional interviews may be conducted to determine the final members of the advisory group.

For more information about coastal steelhead in Washington, and for other ways to participate in the season-setting process, visit https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/management/steelhead/coastal.