Anglers Net Over $800k in Northern Pike Minnow Bounties on Snake and Columbia Rivers

One angler took home nearly $50,000 in rewards alone.

Featured image from PikeMinnow.Org

If you’re looking for a way to get paid to fish while helping protect wild salmon and steelhead populations in the Snake and Columbia Rivers, let us introduce you to the  Northern Pikeminnow Sport Reward Program.

“The Pikeminnow Sport Reward Fishery Program, funded by the Bonneville Power Administration and administered by the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission, pays anglers for each Northern Pikeminnow that they catch that is nine inches or larger. Rewards range from $5 to $8 per fish, and the special tagged fish are worth $500.”

Why is this native species being managed like this? 

According to Eric McOmie, the BPA’s program manager “When we remove the larger northern pikeminnow, more young salmon and steelhead have a better chance of making it to the ocean and eventually returning to the basin as adults.”

Basically, it comes down to the sheer number of wild steelhead and salmon eggs and young the voracious pike minnows eat every year.

According to the Tri-City Herald, “This year 103,114 pikeminnow were caught and turned in by 2,450 people who registered for the program. They turned in an average of 6.5 fish a day.”

You can learn more about the program, here, and read more about the 2020 program results, here

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