The 2009 Oregon fishing regulations are out and the cold, hard slap to the face of all of us who worked hard to save wild coastal cutthroat trout is in print for all to see! Northwest Zone Trout: 2 per day, 2 daily limits in possession 8-inch minimum length The harsh reality of it all will not fully sink in until I see some Powerbait using idiot carrying a stringer full of wild steelhead smolt with his wife and kids in tow along the river next season.
What this all boils down to is the fact that the dysfunctional state agency AKA Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is full of people that only care about saving their jobs! The governor of this state says all state agencies must cut back as much as ten percent and so the bureaucrats at ODFW are scrambling like cockroaches when you turn the kitchen light on at night to save their asses! It's not really about increasing angling opportunity anymore. The management of ODFW knows that they better generate revenue because the governor's budget ax is going to cut deep on any programs falling under the general fund.
This is an agency who will send up to ten empty suits to a budget meeting where only four members of the general public show up. This is an agency who was, until recently, using gas guzzling pick up trucks to drive up and down the Nestucca river to check a single fish trap! This is an agency that planned an important public meeting about the welfare of cutthroat trout on the Friday before Memorial Day when they know they will get minimal public participation.Finally this is an agency who will spend money on cleaning out mud at a worthless boat ramp that filled right back up with mud at the first high water!
These geniuses at the Salem headquarters and Tillamook regional headquarters were just waiting for the opportunity to screw over wild cutthroat trout in the name of creating angling opportunities. They waited four years to stick it to the wild fish conservation groups and they did with the help of a seemingly detached and disinterested commission.
Their laughable angler review board ramrodded all these harvest proposals through and only one conservation proposal made it through the commission at the final vote.
These are the people charged with the stewardship of our wild fish and after they have summarily mismanaged nearly all wild salmonids into near extinction they set their eyes on the last wild coastal trout population on the west coast...the coastal cutthroat trout.
The old Billy Preston song "Nothing From Nothing Leaves Nothing" should be the anthem at ODFW headquarters in Salem because that is exactly what is going to be left when these save asses are done!
My good friend John Bracke coined the phrase "Oregon Department of Failure and Waste" and is certainly is an apt description for an agency so top heavy and out of control that the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing.
I'll tell you folks I am disgusted beyond anger at what has transpired this regulation cycle. Wild fish will get killed and grilled and the heritage of this state is dying!
The fabled Tillamook fall Chinook run has been a no show the last two years. The north coast chum salmon are on the verge of disappearing and the wild winter steelhead redds are few and far between! So now it's the cutthroat trout! Who as an indicator species as to the health of wild salmonids in an anadromous coastal river, have not fully recovered from the last interference and folly by ODFW!
ODFW will have to do the mandated cuts that the governor demands but what programs will be cut? None of the sacred cows that should be cut mind you. By sacred cows I am referring to hatcheries and hatchery programs that are obsolete,outdated and polluting!
So any of you that are thinking of visiting Oregon to partake of some "blue ribbon" trout fishing you'd better come soon if you want a chance maybe hook a nice trout! They are quickly disappearing while ODFW and especially those at the Tillamook regional office do their best Emperor Nero impersonation and fiddle while our wild fish burn.