Governor Inslee declared this week “Invasive Species Week” so in occasion we would like to shed some light to a lurking threat to the Upper Columbia, the Northern Pike. These lethal fish are 57 miles from our salmon population, separated only by Chief Joseph Dam. These gnarly looking creatures are not native to our area and are extremely prolific in places they have established across the west. They can devour fish that are 60% of their own length and can consume up to 70% of their diet in salmon. If they make it to the Upper Columbia, our already threatened salmon would barely stand a chance.
Many of our partners in the region are working toward the same goal of keeping these powerful threats from settling in our region. Anglers, public utilities organizations, tribes, nonprofits and beyond are banding together working on ways to keep these fish from decimating our region.
For a general overview of Northern Pike in our area, listen to this great radio interview with Bill Towey, Fisheries Scientist with Chelan PUD and Dave Graybill, The Fishin’ Magician. If you are an angler, you can head out to the various places to fish for Northern Pike and take advantage of the Colville Tribes reward program.
Visit our Northern Pike Resources page to learn about other ways to engage.