The decision, detailed in the FONSI, will direct the long-term management for fish within lakes, rivers and streams in Mount Rainier National Park. Fish management actions and revisions to fishing regulations will conserve native fish populations, including threatened bull trout, and restore ecosystems in the park by reducing or eliminating nonnative fish. The plan also provides for continued and expanded recreational fishing opportunities and related visitor experiences.
To help implement the approved fish management actions, the NPS has updated the park fishing regulations to continue to conserve native fish populations, including threatened bull trout, and to restore aquatic ecosystems in the park by reducing or eliminating nonnative fish while providing for continued and expanded recreational fishing opportunities and related visitor experiences.
Native fish species, including the threatened bull trout, will be conserved with the continued removal of nonnative fish, including Eastern Brook Trout and Kokanee Salmon. Approximately 35 mountain lakes within the park contain breeding populations of nonnative fish; these fish compete with native fish and amphibians for food and habitat. A current Mount Rainier Fish Regulation guide, including images of native and nonnative fish for identification, is posted on the park's website at http://www.nps.gov/mora
A notice of the proposed rule change was published in the Federal Register at https://www.federalregister.gov/public-inspection/2022-00231/mount-rainier-national-park-fishing
A 60-day public review and comment period began on January 11, 2022 and is now complete.
The EA analyzed three alternatives. The selected alternative will update fishing regulations emphasizing catch and release of native fish species and retention or harvest of nonnative fish species, implement nonnative fish suppression and/or eradication from selected streams and rivers in bull trout habitat and fish removal from up to 10 lakes, expand research and monitoring, and allow adaptive management. A no action alternative (status quo management) and a more expansive action alternative were also considered.
The FONSI, its attachments, and the EA are available by clicking on the "Document List" button, located on the left sidebar.
The National Park Service appreciates the public taking time to share their comments, ideas and concerns, and contributing to the Mount Rainier National Park planning process.
Kevin Skerl, Deputy Superintendent (253) 341-0470
The National Park Service (NPS) has completed its environmental review and has issued a decision and a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Fish Management Plan Environmental Assessment (EA).