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"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to  commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." -Thomas Jefferson, quoting Cesare Beccaria.

 

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Oregon:

Groundfish season set for 2006

 SALEM – Citing the need to provide year-round angling opportunities while adhering to federal guidelines for groundfish, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission today approved a six-fish ocean bag limit for 2006.

Nine sport groundfish species are managed through federal harvest caps, forcing state fishery managers to adjust bag limits, season durations and retention days in an effort to maximize angling opportunities.

During the 2005 season, fishery managers were forced to make an in-season adjustment from eight fish to five in July, in an effort to remain under federal harvest caps for black rockfish. The reduction was not enough, and managers closed the rockfish season when the federal harvest cap for black rockfish was met in October.

With the 2006 federal harvest cap for black rockfish 7.5 metric tons lower than the 2005 threshold, managers proposed a six marine fish daily bag limit, plus two lingcod. Lingcod stocks have been growing steadily for several years. The 2006 federal harvest limit was increased 24 metric tons, to 175 metric tons.

“The federal harvest caps provide important protection for sensitive stocks, but they make season-setting a difficult challenge,” said ODFW Marine Resources Program Manager Patricia Burke. “Our goal is to maximize angling opportunity by setting seasons that last throughout the year. This conservative approach helps ensure angling opportunities for all Oregon anglers throughout the year.”

Pacific halibut anglers on the Columbia River will see increased opportunity in 2006, with a plan to allow for a second season in August based on additional fish allocations for that area.

The halibut possession limit was increased from two to three daily limits, to allow anglers to fish three-day openings and legally transport their catch.

The Commission approved use of a federal measure allowing a second fish to be added to the daily limit later in the season if there is a substantial percentage of the harvest allocation uncaught after Labor Day.

The next regular meeting of the OFWC is Jan. 5-6 in Salem.