Recreational Shrimp Fishery Opens May 3 In Puget Sound

shrimp1OLYMPIA – Recreational spot shrimp fishing will open May 3 in Puget Sound under seasons announced today by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

This year’s Puget Sound shrimp fishing seasons are similar to those in 2013 with a few exceptions, said Mark O’Toole, a shellfish biologist for WDFW.

Puget Sound recreational shrimp season opening days are:

  • Hood Canal Shrimp District (Marine Area 12): Open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on May 3, 7, 10 and 21.
  • Discovery Bay Shrimp District (Marine Area 6): Open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 3, 7, 10 and 21.
  • Marine Areas 4 (east of the Bonilla-Tatoosh line), 5, 6 and 13 (excluding Discovery Bay Shrimp District): Open daily beginning May 3. The sport spot shrimp season closes when the quota is attained or Sept. 15, whichever comes first. The exception is Marine Area 13, which closes for spot shrimp May 31.
  • Marine Area 7 East, South and West: Open May 3 for a one-day fishery and will reopen May 7-10, May 21-24 and May 28-31. In Marine Area 7 West only, the season will be open daily beginning June 1 until the quota is reached or Sept. 15, whichever comes first. 
  • Marine Areas 8-1, 8-2, 9 and 10: Open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 3 and May 7.
  • Marine Area 11: Open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 3, 7 and 10.

In areas 4, 5, 6, 7 (East, South and West) and 13, start times will be one hour before sunrise.

Additional dates and times will be announced if sufficient quota remains after the initial fishing days scheduled above. For the latest information on sport shrimp seasons, or for a description of marine areas, visit WDFW’s Recreational Shrimp Fishing website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/shrimp/.

“We have slightly lower quotas than last year in Hood Canal and Discovery Bay, which are traditionally popular areas,” O’Toole said. “We will reopen the areas later if sufficient quota remains.”

WDFW is expanding the opportunity for shrimp fishing in Marine Area 7 West, which will be open daily beginning June 1 until the quota is reached or until Sept. 15, whichever comes first. That’s a change from last season’s schedule of Thursday through Saturday for the same time period. It is likely this area will be open for spot shrimp fishing well into the summer, due to an increase in allocation that was implemented last year, O’Toole said.

Also known as prawns, spot shrimp are the largest shrimp in Puget Sound and may grow up to nine inches in length. In all areas of Puget Sound, fishers are limited to 80 spot shrimp per day. A valid 2014-15 fishing license is required to participate in the fishery.

March 31, 2014