Outdoors briefs: Entomologist to address Richland Rod & Gun Club

RICHLAND -- A Washington State University professor will be the guest speaker at the January meeting of the Richland Rod & Gun Club.

James Hyde, an entomologist, will discuss local insects at the meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. on Jan. 6 at the City of Richland Maintenance Facility, exit 3 from Interstate 182 to Queensgate Drive, across from Wal-Mart.

Columbia River white sturgeon season set

The 2009 sport fishery for Columbia River white sturgeon will open New Year's Day under rules similar to those in effect this year, but with tighter catch limits below Bonneville Dam.

Catch limits will be 2,000 fish lower in the lower Columbia River and adjoining tributaries in 2009 under fishing rules adopted last week by fishery managers from Washington and Oregon.

The largest adjustment is in the area from the Wauna powerlines near Cathlamet upstream to Bonneville Dam, where anglers will be limited to 11,268 legal-size white sturgeon.

This year's catch was estimated at 13,919 fish -- 1,532 fish above the number allotted for that area.

Next year's harvest guidelines for both areas of the lower Columbia River are designed to bring the catch into line during the fourth year of a sturgeon-management agreement between Washington and Oregon, officials said.

Anglers who fish for sturgeon in the new year should be aware of a new rule adopted by the two state commissions that will base official size limits for white sturgeon on "fork length" measurements, rather than the total length of the fish.

The new size limits, which take effect Jan. 1, are based on the distance from the tip of a sturgeon's nose to the fork in its tail, making it easier to measure thrashing fish.