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Final Salmon Survey Reported

The final results of a survey of salmon anglers who took part in the extraordinary 2001 chinook seasons show anglers spending an average $371 per fishing trip for a total of $46.1 million.

Fish and Game anadromous fisheries manager Sharon Kiefer presented the final report to the Fish and Game Commission at its meeting in Boise January 16-18. The report focused on individual fisheries more than the preliminary report Kiefer gave late last year.

The lower Clearwater River produced the most fish at 12,360 of the 43,690 caught statewide but the Little Salmon showed the highest success rate at 51 percent compared to 48 percent total. Three percent of anglers caught more than 20 chinook before fishing ended in late summer.

Anglers in Idaho enjoyed the largest run ever of hatchery-reared chinook salmon last spring and summer because of unusually favorable runoff levels when the fish were juveniles headed to sea and good ocean conditions while they were growing. Fishing was allowed in 11 different waters last year.