Comment Period Open for Rule Affecting Fisheries Management at Mount Rainier National Park

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The National Park Service has opened a 60-day public review and comment period on a proposed rule change affecting the implementation of the park’s 2018 Mount Rainier National Park Fisheries Management Plan.

The proposed rule change notification was posted on Jan. 11 in the Federal Register available online at www.federalregister.gov, stated a news release.

The public currently needs to refer to the Code of Federal Regulations to learn more about fishing regulations in the park. If the rule change is approved, the public will be able to find all the regulations on the park’s website in the Superintendent’s Compendium at tinyurl.com/2p96wjnj.

“Moving all fishing regulations to the compendium allows the park to conserve native fish populations by permitting the take and management of nonnative fish at the local level,” stated the release. “By eliminating the restrictions on taking nonnative fish, the park also provides for continued and expanded recreational fishing opportunities and related visitor experiences.”

A Fish Management Plan and Finding of No Significant Impact was signed in September 2018. It directs long term management for fish within lakes, rivers and streams in Mount Rainier National Park, stated the release.

Information on the plan and prior public review is available on the project website at

parkplanning.nps.gov/morafishmgtplan.

The release stated native fish species, like the threatened bull trout, will be conserved with the continued removal of nonnative fish like the Eastern Brook Trout and Kokanee Salmon.

There are approximately 35 mountain lakes within the park that contain breeding populations of nonnative fish. The fish compete with native fish and amphibians for food and habitat.

The park adopted the guidelines of the 2018 Fish Management Plan and the current guide is posted online on the park’s website. It includes images of native and nonnative fish for identification and can be viewed online at tinyurl.com/2p9hfxys.

To learn more about Mount Rainier National Park, go online to www.nps.gov/mora. To learn more about fishing and boating in the park, visit www.nps.gov/mora/planyourvisit/fishing-and-boating.htm.