PHOENIX – How would you like a one-of-a-kind, catch-and-release fishery for feisty roundtail chub at Fossil Creek, which is one of the state’s two travertine streams (Havasupai is the other)?
Can you imagine spear fishing for striped bass at Lake Pleasant in the future?
How would you like to catch-and-keep (or have in your possession) one bass within the 13- to 16-inch slot limit at Roosevelt Lake?
Fisheries Chief Kirk Young said these are some of the potential fishing regulation changes for 2009-2010 for consideration by the Arizona Game and Fish Commission during the October meeting at the Phoenix headquarters.
But to gather public input on the proposals, the Game and Fish Department is conducting a series of public meetings on the draft “Commission Order 40,” which is the basis for what anglers commonly refer to as the fishing regulations.
The following public meetings are being conducted:
- Mesa, 7 p.m. Sept. 2 at the Mesa Regional Game and Fish office, 7200 E. University Dr..
- Flagstaff, 7 p.m. Sept. 9 at the Flagstaff Regional Game and Fish office, 3500 S. Lake Mary Rd.
- Tucson, 7 p.m. Sept. 15, Tucson Regional Game and Fish office, 555 N. Greasewood Road.
- Yuma, 7 p.m. Sept. 17, Yuma Regional Game and Fish office, 9140 E. 28th St.
- Pinetop, 7 p.m. Sept. 22, Pinetop Regional Game and Fish office, 2878 E. White Mountain Blvd.
In addition, you can also submit written comments to: Arizona Game and Fish Department, Fisheries Branch, c/o Kirk Young, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix, AZ 85086.
A detailed explanation of the proposed regulation changes is available online at www.azgfd.gov. The following is a synopsis of the proposed regulations changes for 2009-10:
- Reduce the bag and possession limit for trout from six to four (from three to two for unlicensed anglers) at Woodland Lake.
- Remove bag limits for bass and catfish at Willow Springs Lake, Woods Canyon Lake, Black Canyon Lake, Bear Canyon Lake, Chevelon Lake, CC Cragin Reservoir (Blue Ridge Reservoir), Knoll Lake, and Long Tom Lake
- Extend the fishing closures on the Apache trout recovery waters that include Bear Wallow Creek, Snake Creek, Fish Creek (including tributaries Double Cienega and Corduroy creeks but excluding Ackre Lake), upper East Fork Little Colorado River, Hayground Creek, Conklin Creek, South Fork Little Colorado River, and Stinky Creek to fishing. The closures would remain in effect until population criteria are met for recovering native apache trout.
- Establish a one-of-a-kind, catch-and-release only, artificial fly and lure-only fishing season for native roundtail chub on the recently renovated and re-established free-flowing Fossil Creek in the Verde Valley.
- Allow take of one bass in the slot at Roosevelt Lake. The limit would be changed to six bass, of which no more than one bass between 13 and 16 inches (protected slot limit) in length may be in possession.
- Allow harvest of striped bass at Lake Pleasant by means of spear fishing.
- Implement restrictions (reduced bag limit, slot limit or minimum size limit) on harvest of bass at Saguaro, Canyon and/or Apache lakes to aid in the recovery of these lakes from golden alga impacts.
Once the public input is gathered and the Game and Fish Department makes its final recommendations, the Game and Fish Commission will be considering the 2009-10 fishing regulations during its Oct. 10-11 meeting in Phoenix in the department headquarters at 5000 W. Carefree Highway (just west of Interstate 17).