Repeat San Francisco Abalone Poacher Sentenced to Jail

Media Contacts:
David Bess, DFG Law Enforcement, (916) 653-4094
Kirsten Macintyre, DFG Communications, (916) 322-8988

A San Francisco man who was caught taking abalone out of season three times over a three-week span has been convicted on poaching charges. Qiong Wang, 32, pled guilty to felony conspiracy and taking abalone for commercial purposes in Mendocino County Superior Court. He was sentenced to one year in jail and three years of probation, in addition to being fined $20,000 and forced to forfeit his vehicle and all dive equipment. His fishing license was also revoked for the rest of his life.

Wang illegally took 96 abalone over the course of 17 days in February 2011. The last of the three arrests occurred near Van Damme State Park on Feb. 19, just five days after he was released from jail for the last poaching incident (see https://cdfgnews.wordpress.com/2011/02/22/san-francisco-abalone-poacher-busted-three-times-in-three-weeks/ for details about Wang’s arrests).

Abalone season closed Dec. 1, and did not reopen until April 1.

California Ocean and Inland Salmon Seasons Set by Fish and Game Commission

Feather River Salmon OpenerMedia Contacts:
Scott Barrow, DFG Fisheries Branch, (916) 445-7600
Larry Hanson, DFG Northern Region, (530) 225-2866
Harry Morse,DFG Communications, (916) 322-8962

The Fish and Game Commission today adopted ocean salmon fishing regulations that allow for a season this year. Inland salmon season regulations were also adopted for the Central Valley, and Klamath and Trinity rivers. This represents a restoration of the traditional salmon fishery throughout California, the first since major closures were enacted in 2008 for both ocean and inland waters.

“It is excellent news that we can set ocean and inland salmon seasons that allow commercial and recreational fishing while still protecting stocks of salmon that need special considerations,” said John McCamman, Director of the Department of Fish and Game (DFG). “Anglers will again be able to enjoy salmon fishing, while individuals and  communities that rely on income from this industry will hopefully begin to recover from the economic losses they’ve experienced over the past few years.”

The newly adopted ocean salmon sport fishing regulations conform to those adopted by the Pacific Fisheries Management Council. They are now available on DFG’s website at www.dfg.ca.gov/marine/oceansalmon.asp.

Please note, on all Central Valley rivers, the daily bag limit and possession limit is two Chinook salmon, and anglers on the Trinity and Klamath rivers must have Salmon Harvest Cards in their possession when fishing for salmon.

Details of the newly adopted inland salmon seasons and regulations for Central Valley rivers and the Klamath and Trinity rivers are as follows:

SACRAMENTO RIVER

Upper Sacramento Zone: Open Aug. 1 through Dec. 18 from the Deschutes Road Bridge near Anderson downstream to 500 feet upstream from Red Bluff Diversion Dam.  

Middle Sacramento Zone: Open July 16 through Dec. 18  from 150 feet below the Lower Red Bluff (Sycamore) Boat Ramp to the Highway 113 Bridge near Knights Landing.

Lower Sacramento Zone: Open July 16 through Dec. 11 from the Highway 113 Bridge near Knights Landing downstream to the Carquinez Bridge.  

FEATHER RIVER

Open July 16 through Dec. 11 from 1,000 feet below the Thermalito Afterbay Outfall downstream to the mouth of the Feather River.  

AMERICAN RIVER

Nimbus Dam to Hazel Avenue Bridge will be open to salmon fishing from July 16 through Dec. 31.

Hazel Avenue Bridge to the United States Geological Survey (USGS) gauging station cable crossing near Nimbus Hatchery will be open to salmon fishing from July 16 through Sept. 14.

The USGS gauging station cable crossing near Nimbus Hatchery to the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) power line crossing the southwest boundary of Ancil Hoffman Park will be open to salmon fishing from July 16 through Oct. 31.

The SMUD power line crossing at the southwest boundary of Ancil Hoffman Park to the Jibboom Street Bridge will be open to salmon fishing from July 16 through Dec. 31.

The Jibboom Street Bridge to the mouth will be open to salmon fishing from July 16 through Dec. 11.

KLAMATH RIVER

Open to fall-run Chinook salmon fishing from Aug. 15 through Dec. 31 with a daily bag limit of three Chinook salmon, of which no more than two may be more than 22 inches in length. The possession limit is nine Chinook salmon, of which no more than six may be more than 22 inches in length. The 2011 quota for the Klamath River basin is 7,900 fall-run salmon more than 22 inches in length. Once this quota has been met, no Chinook salmon greater than 22 inches in length may be retained (anglers may still retain a limit of Chinook salmon under 22 inches in length). A weekly DFG status report will be available by calling 1-800-564-6479.

Open to spring-run Chinook salmon fishing from Jan. 1 through Aug. 14 with a daily bag and possession limit of two salmon. The take of salmon is prohibited on the Klamath River from Iron Gate Dam downstream to Weitchpec from Jan. 1 through Aug. 14.

TRINITY RIVER

Open to fall-run Chinook salmon fishing from Sept. 1 through Dec. 31 with a daily bag limit of three Chinook salmon, of which no more than two may be more than 22 inches in length. The possession limit is nine Chinook salmon, of which no more than six may be over 22 inches. The 2011 quota for the Klamath River basin is 7,900 fall-run salmon more than 22 inches in length. Once this quota has been met, no Chinook salmon greater than 22 inches in length may be retained (anglers may still retain a limit of Chinook salmon under 22 inches in length). A weekly DFG status report will be available by calling 1-800-564-6479. The Trinity River main stem downstream of the Highway 299 bridge at Cedar Flat to the Denny Road bridge in Hawkins Bar is closed to all fishing Sept. 1 through Dec. 31.

Open to spring-run Chinook salmon fishing from Jan. 1 through Aug. 31. The daily bag and possession limit is two Chinook salmon. The take of salmon is prohibited from the confluence of the South Fork Trinity River downstream to the confluence of the Klamath River from Jan. 1 through Aug. 31.

All other regulations for bag and possession limits for trout, salmon and other species, as well as general information about restrictions on fishing methods and gear on the above rivers, are available on the DFG website at www.dfg.ca.gov/regulations.

DFG to Hold Final Public Meeting on Suction Dredge Permitting Program

Media Contacts:
Mark Stopher, Environmental Program Manager, (530)225-2275
Jordan Traverso, Deputy Director, Communications, Education and Outreach, (916) 654-9937

The Department of Fish and Game (DFG) has scheduled a sixth and final meeting to take public comment on the state’s proposed Suction Dredge Permitting Program. Following the release of a Draft Subsequent Environmental Impact Report (SEIR) for the proposed program on February 28, five public meetings were held throughout the state. 

An additional public hearing to receive comments on the Draft SEIR has been scheduled for the last day of the public comment period, Tuesday, May 10, from 9 a.m. to noon. The meeting will be held in the auditorium of the Natural Resources Building, 1416 Ninth St., Sacramento, 95814. 

The Draft SEIR addresses the potential environmental effects that could result from the implementation of the proposed program. The proposal addresses the issuance of permits and suction dredge activities conducted in compliance with these permits, consistent with DFG’s proposed amendments to the existing regulations governing suction dredge mining in California.

The Draft SEIR and supporting documents are available on the DFG website at www.dfg.ca.gov/suctiondredge. Written comments must be postmarked by May 10, and may be submitted either by e-mail to dfgsuctiondredge@dfg.ca.gov or by regular mail to:

Mark Stopher
California Department of Fish and Game
601 Locust St.
Redding, CA  96001

If you require reasonable meeting accommodation for a disability or require this notice or the Draft SEIR in an alternate format, please contact the Suction Dredge Permitting Program at (530) 225-2275, or the California Relay (Telephone) Service for the deaf or hearing-impaired from TDD phones at 1-800-735-2929 or 711.

For more information about the Suction Dredge Permitting Program, please visit www.dfg.ca.gov/suctiondredge/.

Northern California Hunting Guide Loses License

Media Contact:
Lt. Rick Banko, DFG Enforcement Division, (707) 825-4861
Dana Michaels, DFG Communications, (916) 322-2420

A Department of Fish and Game (DFG) investigation led the Humboldt County District Attorney’s office to file 17 charges against a bear hunter and licensed guide. In an April 12 plea agreement, Edgar Ray Roden, 56, of McKinleyville, pleaded guilty to four Fish and Game Code violations.

In June 2009 DFG wardens caught Roden running his hounds in a dog control zone in Northern Humboldt County that was closed at the time. They later served a search warrant at his residence. The subsequent investigation uncovered 17 violations of California’s wildlife laws. Charges ranged from illegal take and possession of black bear to illegal possession of mountain lion hides that were made into rugs. Licensed hunting guides are subject to the same laws – and the same penalties for violating them – as all other hunters.

“People who offer guide services to hunters in California know the difference between legal hunting and poaching,” said Warden Jackie Krug, lead investigator in the case. “We count on them to help educate hunters, and expect them to know, respect and obey the laws and regulations.”

Roden pleaded guilty to taking two bears over the legal limit, using hounds to pursue/take mammals in a closed zone, falsifying his guide license application by failing to disclose a prior spotlighting conviction, and failing to keep and submit guide log records as required.

The court sentenced Roden to three years of probation and fined him $3,140. He was also ordered to forfeit his 2011 hunting license and hunting privileges for all species, beginning the opening day of bear season and ending the closing day of bear season. In addition, he will not be permitted to apply for or receive a guide license for three years from the date of sentencing.

The DFG Law Enforcement Division reminds Californians that environmental laws exist to ensure proper wildlife management and species survival. Poaching – illegally harming or killing fish or wildlife – is an insult to the vast majority of hunters and anglers who obey the rules. Californians can help protect their wildlife and habitat by reporting poachers and polluters to DFG by calling the toll-free CalTIP hotline: 1-888-334-2258 (888-DFG-CALTIP). For more information, please visit the CalTIP webpage at http://www.dfg.ca.gov/enforcement/caltip.aspx.

Fish and Game Commission May Consider Groundfish Regulations at April 21 Teleconference

Media Contacts:       
Jon K. Fischer, California Fish and Game Commission, (916) 653-4899
Sonke Mastrup, Department of Fish and Game, (916) 653-4673

The California Fish and Game Commission may discuss and possibly modify state groundfish regulations at its April 21 teleconferenced meeting. Although the item is not currently on the agenda, pursuant to Government Code Section 11125.3(a)(2), the Commission may vote to include the item when they meet.

The state groundfish regulations must conform to the new federal groundfish regulations that are expected to take effect in early May. 

The call, which is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m., will originate from the Commission’s conference room in the Resources Building, 1416 Ninth St., Rm. 1320, in Sacramento. The interested public may participate at this location or at any of the following locations:

Department of Fish and Game (DFG) Santa Barbara Field Office and Laboratory
1933 Cliff Dr., Suite 9
Santa Barbara (93109)

DFG Inland Deserts Region
3602 Inland Empire Blvd., Suite C-220
Ontario (91764)

Center for the Future of the Oceans
Monterey Bay Aquarium
99 Pacific St., Suite 100A
Monterey (93940)

The teleconference will also be webcast live at www.fgc.ca.gov/meetings/FGCmeetingsvideolinks.asp.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife News