Predation challenges, like those in the Delta, are not exclusive to California. Neighboring western states face similar drought conditions as California and and are also home to endangered fish species, not unlike those in the Delta.
Washington and Oregon are both home to endangered Columbia River Salmon populations whose conditions have been exacerbated by drought conditions and non-native predator species. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) was one of the first states to implement aggressive regulations combating non-native predator species.
In 2013, WDFW staff proposed removing size and bag limits in the Columbia River watershed where endangered juvenile salmon are often the prey of bass and other warm water predators. The plan was proposed to the Washington Fish and Game Commission. After input was taken from the public, the Commissioners eventually approved the policy. The decision was supported by biological data and research proving the prevalence of predation on endangered juvenile salmon.
Since the Columbia River also runs through Oregon, WDFW also worked with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to remove size and bag limits. This coordination was important as endangered Columbia River salmon are also being preyed on by non-native bass and other warm water predators in Oregon. Oregon’s policy went into effect January 1, 2016.