(Oroville) The Feather River Fish Hatchery staff has finished spawning fall-run Chinook salmon for this season. The facility has trapped approximately 18,000 salmon, including both adults and jacks and jills, compared to 23,000 fish last season.
“We were really worried at first because the salmon were just trickling in, not showing in the big numbers we normally see. However, we have taken enough eyed eggs, 11 -1/2 million, to produce our goal of 8 million smolts,” said Anna Kastener, hatchery manager.
“The fish were really healthy, although they appeared to be smaller than normal,” she noted. “We saw a lot of jacks and jills this season.”
She hasn’t seen many steelhead show at the facility to date, but it’s still early for the steelies.
Steelhead fishing is improving for anglers on the Feather River from Gridley on up to the Highway 162 Bridge. “Bank anglers and boaters are hooking steelies in the 3 to 5 pound range while using Glo Bugs, roe and nightcrawlers,” reported Bob Boucke of Johnson’s Bait and Tackle in Yuba City.
The river above the Live Oak Boat ramp closed to salmon fishing on October 15, though it remains open for fishing for striped bass, steelhead and other species, Boucke advised.