WSR 21-19-144
[Filed September 22, 2021, 9:23 a.m.]
The department of fish and wildlife is in the process of developing a species recovery plan for pinto abalone, as directed by WAC 220-610-110. The department seeks comment on the recovery plan from interested parties. The plan is available at
The pinto abalone (Haliotis kamtschatkana) is a large marine snail and Washington's only species of abalone. It lives on shallow rocky reefs and kelp forests in the San Juan Islands and Strait of Juan de Fuca. It is prized for its delicious meat and decorative shell and was the subject of a state recreational fishery between 1959 and 1994.
Under the authority of RCW 77.12.020, the fish and wildlife commission listed the species as endangered in July 2019 following a status review by the department of fish and wildlife staff and subsequent public comment. The status review concluded that the population continued to decline even after the fishery closure, likely due to reproductive failure related to a low density of spawning adults. The status review also concluded that the species would likely become extinct in the state without additional protection and active management.
The public comment period will extend until January 6, 2022. Comments to the plan can be submitted via:
Comment home page URL is
Email address for public comments on the recovery plan is
Email address for public comments on the SEPA determination is
For questions, please contact Katie Sowul in the Fish Program, Washington department of fish and wildlife, at
Assistance for language translation, alternate format, or reasonable accommodation: Contact Title VI/ADA compliance coordinator, phone 360-902-2349, TTY 1-800-833-6388 or 711, email For more information, see