Oregon FWC Briefed on Plans for Several Wildlife Areas

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The Fish and Wildlife Commission was briefed on draft management plans for several wildlife areas.

These plans are designed to guide management of the Fern Ridge, Lower Deschutes, Riverside and Bridge Creek wildlife areas for the next 10 years. Oregon's state wildlife areas provide habitat for fish and wildlife and outdoor recreational opportunities for the public.

Hunters, anglers, wildlife viewers and other users of these wildlife areas are encouraged to review the plans and comment on them. Final Commission consideration and formal adoption of the plans is scheduled for the April 17, 2009 meeting in Corvallis. Email comments to ODFW.Comments@state.or.us or mail them to ODFW Headquarters, 3406 Cherry Ave NE, Salem, OR 97303.

ODFW will also host public meetings in communities located near the wildlife areas, where plans will be presented and public comments accepted:

  • * Bridge Creek Wildlife Area (near Ukiah): Jan. 27, 6-8 p.m., Pendleton Convention Center, 1601 Westgate Ave
  • * Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area (Wasco and Sherman counties): Jan. 14, 6-8 p.m., The Dalles Screen Shop, 3561 Klindt Drive; Jan. 15, 10 a.m.-noon, Sherman County High School Rm 6, 65912 High School Loop, Moro; Jan. 21, 6-8 p.m., Jefferson County Fire Hall, 765 S. Adams Drive, Madras
  • * Fern Ridge Wildlife Area (near Eugene): Jan. 23, 7-9 p.m., Eugene Water and Electric Board, North HQ Bldg, 500 East 4th Ave.
  • * Riverside Wildlife Area (near Juntura): Jan. 13, 7-9 p.m. MST, Four Rivers Cultural Center, 676 SW 5th Ave., Ontario and Jan. 14, 7-9 p.m. PST, Harney County Senior Center, 17 S. Alder, Burns

The Commission adopted a rule to formally allow fishing from a float tube on select St. Louis Ponds outside of Woodburn. The change will bring the administrative rules in line with the recently adopted 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations that allow a personal float tube on all ponds except numbers 1 and 3.

In other business, the Commission approved a schedule of damages to be used in assessing commercial fishing violations. Each year the Commission establishes the average market value of each species of food fish. These market values are used to establish damages in lawsuits associated with the unlawful taking of food fish.

The Commission is the policy-making body for fish and wildlife issues in the state. The seven-member panel meets monthly and the next meeting is Feb. 20, 2009 in Astoria.

Agenda item exhibits may be requested by calling the ODFW Director's Office at (800) 720-6339 or (503) 947-6044, or by going to www.dfw.state.or.us.