Much of the Pacific halibut quota has gone unharvested this year, as anglers have instead opted for salmon, bottomfish, or tuna when available. In response, Oregon DFW has opened more halibut fishing opportunities south of Cape Falcon, as the Columbia River Subarea has closed for the year.
South of Cape Falcon, we will increase the daily bag limit for Pacific halibut from 1-fish to 2-fish per day, and for the Central Coast Subarea (Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt.) the all-depth fishery is now open 7-days a week instead of Thurs-Sat. The Central Coast Subarea and Southern Oregon Subarea will remain open until October 31, or until the quota is attained.
The seasonal bottomfish depth restriction was removed beginning Wednesday, September 1. During days open to both all-depth halibut and all-depth bottomfish, the retention of bottomfish is allowed on halibut trips. Also longleader and halibut will no longer be allowed in combination, as anglers will instead be limited to the general marine bag limit of 5 fish along with the 2 fish limit for lingcod.
Use of a descending device to release rockfish is required when fishing deeper than 30 fathoms, and recommended at any depth for fish that are not able to submerge on their own.