News: Get paid to go fishing! What's the catch? Pikeminnow that prey on salmon, steelhead
by KVAL StaffPORTLAND, Ore. (KVAL) - How would you like to catch fish and make money - while helping young salmon and steelhead?
Sound too good to be true?
Last year, the top angler in the Northern Pikeminnow Sport Reward Fishery made over $83,000 in 5 months.
That was actually a step down from past years: In 2016, the top angler caught $119,341 worth of pikeminnow.
The top angler in 2015 caught over $100,000 worth of the fish.
Ready to learn more?
The program opened May 1 on the Columbia and Snake rivers and runs through September 30.
The program pays registered anglers $5 to $8 per pikeminnow caught over 9 inches long.
To help sweeten the catch, biologists released 1,000 tagged fish worth $500 each.
The program is administered by the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission and is funded by the Bonneville Power Administration.
Last year, BPA paid out more than $1.5 million.
The top 20 anglers in 2017 earned an average of $30,000 each.
Why does this program exist?
"Northern pikeminnow are voracious eaters, consuming millions of young salmon and steelhead each year," BPA said in a statement. "Since 1990, anglers paid through the program, have removed more than 4.8 million pikeminnow from the Columbia and Snake rivers. The program has reduced predation from pikeminnow on young salmon and steelhead by approximately 40 percent since it began."
For more information on how to register and take part, call 800-858-9015 or visit www.pikeminnow.org.