The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is asking for help catching the pikeminnow. The species is invasive to the river and anglers are being asked to catch as many as they can as part of a harvest program.
The contest will take place from August 1 to September 2 with anglers required to catch pikeminnow with a hook and line and valid Oregon sport fishing license. From there, competitors can photograph their fish and place the catch into four categories to win various prizes from a free guided fishing trip to cash and gift cards.
But don’t throw your fish out. This year ODFW has partnered with Wildlife Images so that every fish caught can be fed to the animals. According to Dave Siddon, executive director of the non-profit, they go through over a thousand pounds of fish a year. These treats usually go to feed all types of resident animals like the bears and otters but also those in rehabilitation.
“Fish is wonderful and having a supply like Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife or local hatchery help us out with that makes a huge difference in our budget,” said Siddon.
From now till September, anglers can turn in their fish in every Monday at Bradburys Gun-n-Tackle in Grants Pass or Wildlife Images itself. If you do catch any pikeminnow, the non-profit asks that you keep it frozen in order to protect it and the animals that will eat it from any harmful bacteria.
While this harvest program is only happening in August, ODFW encourages anglers on the Rogue River to catch pikeminnow whenever possible. Wildlife Images will happily accept the donation as well.
If you would like to join to win a prize you can sign up by email at [email protected] where you can send in photos of your catch or you can show up at either location every Monday to turn in your fish.