Fish & Feathers: Washington Department Fish and Wildlife farce

Robbie Gudgell took this magnificent moose at Drifters Creek, 150 miles north of Fort Saint James in British Colombia. The shot was taken at 120 yards using a 50 caliber white-powder rifle with open sights.

The WDFW is considering several revisions to the state licensing rules, primarily to gain additional revenue, one of them being "Guide License Reform."

Currently, recreational guides are not required to have first aid/CPR training, insurance ($300,000 minimum) and Coast Guard certification. Charter boats are required to have all these certifications. Under the WDFW proposal, rather than mandating that guides must have these certifications, an economic incentive will encourage acquisition of the safety certifications.

Stop and think what this means. Doesn't this mean that although the state recognizes the fact these certifications should be held by recreational guides, they are willing to overlook the shortcoming with a bribe of money? Recreational guides are dealing in public transportation and should be held responsible for liability insurance and the skills required to insure safety of the public who are employing them. They should also subject to the same to USCG certification as larger boat operators.

The state of Washington is willing to justify overlooking public safety for an estimated increase in revenue of about $120,000.

The recreational guides should be mandated to obtain these certifications rather than being given the opportunity to get off the hook for a few hundred dollars. I thought it was a federal crime to bribe state officials. If not, maybe we could pass a $20 bill to a cop the next time we get stopped, in the hope of getting out of a ticket - makes sense to me.

Coho fishing on the Cowlitz WDFW fish biologists report that, to date, 15,000 adult coho have returned to the salmon hatchery on the Cowlitz. Based on the average run timing, as many as 50,000 coho may return to the river in 2002.

Consequently, beginning Oct. 19, up to four adult hatchery coho may be retained in the daily limit. This includes the lower and upper Colwitz, Tilton and Cispus rivers and Lake Scanewa. The landlock rules for Lake Scanewa are rescinded.

"Old Men" invade Radar LakeIt has been reported that a group of elderly gentlemen from the Ocean Park area have been seen and heard "hooting and hollering" while fishing at Radar Lake. Some have been identified as "Big John," "Dandy Don," "Cupcake Terry," "Terrible Ted," "Tiny Tom," "Cocktail Wayne" and "At least 16-inch Barry." The women, who should be considered accomplices, supply them with food and libations just to get them out of the house. The women have been identified as "Slim-fast Mary," "Bad Barbara" and "Marie the Moll."

Since their intrusion into the Radar Lake area, park rangers have reported that all forms of forest life have relocated into the deep forests.

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