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The spot shrimp season got off to a relatively good start in Puget Sound and Hood Canal, and state Fish and Wildlife is crunching numbers to see if anything is left in the tackle box for additional fishing dates.

“Fishing was generally good in most areas and the weather was good everywhere except the eastern Straits where there was a westerly and a lot of seasick people according to the ramp samplers,” said Mark O’Toole, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist.

“Hood Canal wasn’t as good as it should have been and people in southern Puget Sound struggled, but places like Bainbridge Island were really good,” O’Toole said. “The catch (in Hood Canal) was strange since test fishing three weeks ago was really good, and usually correlates really well. It wasn’t awful, but overall preliminary catch was 13.5 pounds per boat, and only 40 percent of the boats limited compared to 50 percent (in past seasons).”

Here are the preliminary catch data for the first day of the season on May 6 (note: the average recreational boat fishes 3.5 pots – the maximum is four pots – and carries 3.5 anglers on board):

Discovery Bay Shrimp District – 65 boats fished with an estimated 10.9 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 15.4 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 710 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 38 boats fished with an estimated 10.1 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 15.4 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 385 pounds.

Eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca and San Juan Islands East, South and West areas (Marine Catch Areas 6 and 7) – Catch data was unavailable.

Everett/Saratoga Pass (Area 8) – 528 boats fished with an estimated 18.7 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 11.9 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 9,880 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 587 boats fished with an estimated 17.6 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 11.4 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 10,334 pounds.

Northern Puget Sound (Area 9) – 246 boats fished with an estimated 18.6 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 13.7 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 4,585 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 204 boats fished with an estimated 18.2 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 13.3 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 3,724 pounds.

Central Puget Sound (Area 10) – 261 boats fished (this was a four-hour fishery) with an estimated 18.9 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 11.4 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 4,938 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 328 boats fished with an estimated 18.7 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 11.4 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 6,150 pounds.

Elliott Bay (Area 10) – 177 boats fished (this was a four-hour fishery) with an estimated 20.7 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 10.0 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 3,673 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 196 boats fished with an estimated 24.1 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 9.4 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 4,740 pounds.

“It was an all-time record catch in Elliott Bay last year with a per boat average of 24.1 pounds (16.7 in 2015 on same date, 19.8 in 2014 and 16.9 in 2013),” O’Toole said. “That was the highest catch anywhere in Puget Sound.”

South-central Puget Sound (Area 11) – 186 boats fished (this was a four-hour fishery) with an estimated 15.8 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 10.8 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 2,929 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 188 boats fished with an estimated 17.4 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 11.0 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 3,269 pounds.

Hood Canal (Area 12) – 1,508 boats fished (this was a four-hour fishery) with an estimated 13.5 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 15.3 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 20,405 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 1,654 boats fished with an estimated 15.2 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 14.6 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 25,157 pounds.

The total daily average during the four days it was open last year in Hood Canal was about 14.5 pounds of spot shrimp per boat. The opening day produced an average of 15.2 pounds (17.0 in 2015 on the same date, 17.6 in 2014 and 18.0 in 2013).

Southern Puget Sound (Area 13) – 122 boats fished (this was a four-hour fishery) with an estimated 8.0 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 11.2 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 970 pounds. Last year’s opening day data: 95 boats fished with an estimated 15.8 pounds of spot shrimp caught per boat, 10.5 pounds count per pound and a total catch of 1,492 pounds.

Recent abundance test fisheries found that spot shrimp stocks are doing well in marine areas.

Test fishing showed an average of 7.9 pounds in northern Puget Sound (Marine Catch Area 9); 7.8 pounds in central Puget Sound (10); 7.3 pounds in south-central Puget Sound (11); 7.6 pounds in Hood Canal (12); 3.6 pounds in southern Puget Sound (13); 2.7 pounds in Discovery Bay (part of 6); 5.6 pounds in San Juan Island West; and 5.3 pounds on east side of Whidbey Island (8-1 and 8-2).

Until state fisheries assess the catch data spot shrimp fishing is closed until further notice in central, south-central and southern Puget Sound (Marine Catch Areas 10, 11 and 13).

For the moment there are still opportunities to catch spot shrimp as the Strait of Juan de Fuca from Sekiu to Port Angeles (5 and 6) and San Juan Island West (7) are open daily and will close once the catch quota is achieved. Hood Canal (12) is open May 17 and 20 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day.

The Discovery Bay season is open May 17 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. The San Juan Island South and East (7) sections are open daily through May 21.

The east side of Whidbey Island (8-1 and 8-2) and northern Puget Sound (9) are open May 17 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day.

The daily limit is 80 spot shrimp per person.

Spot shrimp are the biggest – averaging 8 to 12 inches long – of more than 80 shrimp species in local marine waterways, but only seven are commonly caught by anglers. Most are lurking at depths of 30 to 300 feet.

Sport and non-tribal commercial fishermen split a 300,000-pound spot shrimp catch quota with 70 percent going to the sport fishery. The tribal fishery has a 300,000-pound catch quota.