Baker Lake

A view of Baker Lake.

The state Department of Fish & Wildlife will host a public workshop Saturday on the management of Baker Lake sockeye salmon.

The workshop will be held at 9 a.m. at the agency’s Mill Creek office, 16018 Mill Creek Blvd.

At the meeting, fisheries managers will summarize this summer’s Baker Lake sockeye fishery and will share ideas on how to improve the fishery, according to a news release.

“We’re refining ideas in preparation for next year’s salmon season setting process and want the public’s input on what we’ve developed so far,” Fish & Wildlife’s regional fish program manager Edward Eleazer said in the release.

State, tribal and federal fisheries managers plan the region’s recreational and commercial salmon fisheries each year during a series of meetings in March and April. The process is known as North of Falcon.

According to Puget Sound Energy, improvements at the Baker Lake dam have led to an increase in the number of fish returning to the river and being available in the lake to fishermen.

The largest number of fish — about 32,000 — returned in 2015, according to Fish & Wildlife data. That’s a big difference compared to the lowest return on record, in 1985, when 99 fish returned.

About 17,000 returned this year, according to Fish & Wildlife, and about half of those were moved into the lake to support the fishery. The other half were used to continue the hatchery program at the lake.

Fishing was open on the lake this year for two months during the summer.

For more information about Baker Lake sockeye, visit wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/salmon/sockeye/baker_river.html.

— Reporter Kimberly Cauvel: 360-416-2199, kcauvel@skagitpublishing.com, Twitter: @Kimberly_SVH, Facebook.com/bykimberlycauvel

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