Dave Jacobs 530 646-9110


May 04, 2018    Headlines
Spring Stripers

Sacramento/Feather Rivers:

Dennis Phanner of Sacramento Pro Tackle said Thursday 5-3, “They are slaughtering,  killing, and maiming the striped bass in the Sacramento metropolitan area with blood worms, pile worms, and sardines, and the river is clearing up enough to throw swimbaits or Zoom Flukes. The larger grade of striped bass are still on the Feather, and we have heard about linesides in the 18 to 25-pound range. A much smaller grade is moving through Sacramento, but the river is loaded with them. Shad are also improving as anglers that were picking up 2 or 3 last week are now catching 10 to 15. The 1/16th oz. shad dart in All American is a big seller along with chartreuse and white/red. We hand-paint all our shad darts here in the shop.” In addition to blood and pile worms, sardines, and anchovies, Phanner has sand dabs and squid in 3- to 5-pound boxes.
Guide Dave Jacobs reports it's still lights out striper action on the main stem Sac but you have to move around to find the biters. He reports the bulk of the Sac stripers are concentrated in the Colusa to Knights Landing stretch. There are schools of spawners who don't cooperate because they have other things in mind. But post spawn these fish can either go on a feeding frenzy or hunker down. Find the schools of fish that likes to eat and not smoke after sex and you will find the action.
One million salmon smolts were released at the Elkhorn boat ramp this week as part of two million smolts over an above the normal releases thanks to the lobbying efforts of the Nor-Cal Guides and Sportsmen’s Association. Unfortunately pleas by other salmon support groups to do a pulse flow went unanswered by the BOR.

GGSA echoes State fish experts’ warning on proposed Sac Valley Reservoir

F:\GGSA\Dams\Sites\Sites graphic.jpg

The proposed Sites Reservoir Project in the Sacramento Valley would take water from the Sacramento River.

In comments filed with the California Water Commission, GGSA is echoing warnings from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife that far more water is needed in the Sacramento than levels the backers of the proposed Sites Reservoir are planning to divert at.  The reservoir, proposed for the western Sacramento Valley, plans to divert river water even at low flows when it’s needed by salmon.

The idea that water can be diverted from the Sacramento River during low flows doesn’t square with levels needed to keep salmon healthy according to state fish and wildlife officials.

Backers of the new giant reservoir say it will help heal the environment.   The southern California’s Metropolitan Water District say their investment in the reservoir would only makes sense if the Delta tunnels project to move it around the Delta is built, which many now consider doubtful.

After GGSA call state water agency finally agrees to pay for tagging hatchery fish


After hard advocacy by GGSA, the California Dept of Water Resources (DWR) agreed to pay to mark and tag Feather River Hatchery fall run baby salmon.  These fish have been adipose fin-clipped and tagged for over 15 years, providing an unbroken series of data on survival and straying.  Until now, DWR has never paid for this even though they are obligated to as part of required mitigation for operation of the Oroville dam.  The cost had been borne by the California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife using emergency drought funds which are now dried up.  CDFW was unable to resolve the dispute with DWR until GGSA got involved and successfully made the case with higher ups in state and federal government that paying for tagging and clipping is part of DWR’s mitigation responsibility.

Outlook for 2018 season

The forecast of adult Sacramento River salmon in the ocean at about 230,000 is very close to what was predicted last year at this time.  Anglers will get an idea of what kind of season we’ll get in 2018 after the Pacific Fisheries Management Council meeting wraps up March 14. Fishing is expected to be restricted due to the relatively low number of Sacramento fall run and protected winter run forecast to be in the ocean now.  Klamath River salmon will be less of a concern in 2018 as their numbers are forecast to be considerably higher than last year.

Because fishery managers over predicted last year’s fall run returns, they have purposely “under predicted” this year’s.  Based on 24,400 two year “jacks” returning to spawn in 2017, about 230,000 adult three year old salmon are predicted to be in the ocean now.  If last year’s predictions had been right, this year’s prediction would likely be closer to 400,000 adult salmon in the ocean now. Federal fishery managers have signaled they would like to see more than the minimum target of 122,000 adult salmon return to spawn in 2018.  They are shooting for over 150,000 to make it back and spawn.

In past years where two year old returns numbered around 24,000, much higher forecasts of three year old adult salmon in the ocean the following spring were made and generally decent fishing seasons were the rule.  For instance, 20,000 two year old spawners in 2013 converted into a forecast of just under 635,000 adult salmon in the ocean in the spring of 2014.  Some fishermen are questioning why last year’s two year olds aren’t leading to a similar robust forecast for the 2018 fishing season.

Upcoming Events:
USAFishing proudly supports the many fishery and wildlife organizations that benefit anglers and hunters throughout Northern California. Does your organization have an upcoming event? Contact us at fishsite@aol.com and we will gladly post the information on our reports pages.

California Waterfowl Dinners and Youth Events Calendar

Golden Gate Salmon Association Events Calendar

River Levels:


Caught Fish? Looking for timely informative updates? Check out a FREE trial to the Northern California Hotsheet, California's fastest growing fishing newsletter. The Hotsheet is emailed three to four evenings per week direct to your desktop. No hunting the web for information or waiting on an outdated magazine to arrive in the mail. These in-depth reports keep you on top of what is happening TODAY so you can catch more fish tomorrow! Just $3.50 per month when you subscribe for one year. You can receive a free week's trial copy by e-mailing a request to hurleyjacks@aol.com
www usafishing

USAfishing.com Copyright © 2005 All rights reserved