New fishing opportunities at refuge


Beginning in the fall of 2019, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will allow year-round access to recreational bank fishing from refuge lands on portions of the Little Nestucca River and in the Nestucca Bay, and clamming at Brooten Marsh.

All recreational fishing and clamming on refuge lands will be conducted in accordance with state and federal regulations and seasons to ensure these activities will not interfere with the conservation of fish, wildlife and their habitats.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is providing an opportunity for anglers to bank fish from Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

“Bank fishing is a new public use for the refuge, and we are pleased to offer it this fall," said Kelly Moroney, project leader for the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex. "Allowing wildlife-dependent recreational opportunities on these lands helps fulfill refuge objectives developed as part of the long-term management plan for Nestucca Bay Refuge.” 

The Fish and Wildlife Service worked with a number of local partners to make this project happen, including the Tillamook Anglers, Nestucca Anglers, Salmon and Trout Advisory Committee, and Nestucca, Neskowin, and Sand Lake Watersheds Council.

Refuge lands will be open for anglers to access during daylight hours. Anglers will be permitted to use pole and line or rod and reel while bank fishing, consistent with ODFW regulations for fishing in bays and tidelands. Dogs and other pets are not allowed on any refuge lands including trails, dikes and parking lots.

Clamming is allowed on state-owned tidelands adjacent to the refuge on the west side of U.S. Highway 101 at Brooten Marsh. The refuge will continue to allow year-round access to clamming beds adjacent to Brooten Marsh which is a 108-acre salt marsh located at the confluence of the Nestucca River and the Little Nestucca River. Clammers access the marsh by walking in from a pullout along county-maintained Brooten Road, or by boat.

At the east end of the Little Nestucca Restoration Area, the Fish and Wildlife Service provided river access for anglers by creating a new parking area along Highway 130/Little Nestucca River Road, less than one mile east of Highway 101. The service will maintain a quarter-mile pedestrian trail along the existing dike to allow safe travel to the bank of the Little Nestucca River. Additionally, anglers can access another designated bank-fishing location in the northwest section of the Two Rivers Peninsula by parking in the upper parking lot of the refuge, accessible from Christensen Road, and walking in along the Two Rivers Nature Trail.

Recreational fishing is a popular sport on the navigable waters of both the Little Nestucca River and the Nestucca River from boats, and also on the rivers’ banks from private lands. Allowing access to bank fishing along the north bank of the Little Nestucca Restoration Area will increase opportunities for fishing in this area and provide a fishing opportunity for people who do not own or have access to a boat. The 2019 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations can be viewed at www.eregulations.com/oregon or call the refuge manager at 541-867-4550.

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