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Here’s What to Do If You Catch a Columbia River Steelhead with a Hole Punched in Its Tail

Don’t eat Steelhead from the upper Columbia River if they have a hole punched in their tail this fall.

If you are fishing for Steelhead on the upper Columbia River between October 1 and December 6 from the bridge in Pasco down to the wooden power line in Old Hanford townsite, Washington officials have a reminder for you.

Anglers must let them go if the steelhead have a hole in their tail. The Department of Fish and Wildlife has released a warning that steelhead with this marking were part of a research project that was recently conducted.

The fish had been sedated with an anesthetic called MS-222. They were taken from the Priest Rapid Dam and then released back into the river. The sedative could pose a risk to human health and renders the fish not safe for eating until three weeks after being used.

NEXT: THIS WINTER FLY FISHING TACTIC WILL HELP YOU CATCH MORE FISH

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Here’s What to Do If You Catch a Columbia River Steelhead with a Hole Punched in Its Tail