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Limits To Go Off Several Area Lakes Saturday

The Washington Fish and Wildlife Department will have an all-you-can-catch clearance sale at eight Eastern Washington trout lakes beginning Saturday.

Scheduled for rehabilitation this fall are Badger and Williams in Spokane County; Hatch in Stevens County; Crescent in Pend Oreille County; and Martha, Sage, Beda and Brookie in Grant County. The Fish and Wildlife Commission approved the use of the organic chemical rotenone to kill all fish in the lakes to eliminate undesirable species.

From July 1-Sept. 30, all catch and size limits for game fish will be suspended in these lakes to allow anglers to salvage fish before the rehab begins.

Walleye plant planned

About 22,000 walleye fry are en route to Sprague Lake, courtesy of the Spokane Walleye Club.

The 2-inch fish will be delivered by truck from a hatchery in Missouri for stocking on Friday morning, said George Orr, club president.

With the approval of the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department, the club spent $7,500 for the stocking from funds raised at its winter sportsmen’s show, Orr said.

Club members plan to meet the truck and take the fish in livewells for release throughout the lake.

“We think the plant will be a boost to the fishery,” Orr said. “Walleyes are really getting hammered at Sprague because of the lake’s proximity to Spokane. We’re going to ask the department to take a close look at whether a five-fish limit is too much for walleyes in Sprague Lake.”

Fishery hearings on tap

Two hearings on different but equally critical federal fisheries plans are scheduled in Spokane Thursday.

One involves inland resident bull trout and cutthroat trout, the other involves salmon and steelhead.

The meetings:

Comments will be heard on the U.S. Forest Service’s Inland Northwest Native Fish Strategy, 4-8 p.m., at the Holiday Inn on Sunset Boulevard. Proposals deal with forest activities such as logging and road building and their impacts on resident fish such as bull trout and cutthroats.

The last public hearing on the Snake River Salmon Recovery Plan, proposed by the National Marine Fisheries Service, is set for 6:30-9:30 p.m. at Spokane Community College Building No. 6 auditorium. The plan involves river flows, hydropower operations, hatcheries, angler harvest and habitat considerations.

Speakers are limited to 5 minutes and must submit their written comments.

, DataTimes