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Want to fish for chum salmon on the Nooksack? You'd better hurry

Ralph Lloyd of Ferndale fly fishes for steelhead in the south fork of the Nooksack River near Van Zandt on Jan. 28, 2009.
Ralph Lloyd of Ferndale fly fishes for steelhead in the south fork of the Nooksack River near Van Zandt on Jan. 28, 2009. The Bellingham Herald file

State fisheries officials said Friday they will close the main stem of the Nooksack River to chum salmon fishing this month, effective Sunday, because of low numbers of the fish returning this fall.

The closure affects the river from the confluence of the north and south forks near Deming downstream to the Lummi Indian Reservation boundary, Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife said in a news release. Chum fishing on the North Fork closed Friday by permanent rule.

The Nooksack Tribe and Lummi Nation have agreed to close their chum fisheries on the river as well.

The closure is necessary to ensure natural escapement and hatchery goals are met, WDFW said.

Sport fisheries for other species will remain open on the Nooksack as allowed by state regulations.

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