Skip to main content

California COVID-19 Call Ended Due to Volume

Teleconference to discuss possible fishing restrictions re-scheduled after hundreds call in.

California COVID-19 Call Ended Due to Volume

Park and beach closed during COVID-19 pandemic. Del Mar Beach, California, USA. April 5th, 2020. (Shutterstock image)

An emergency teleconference call open to the public to discuss the possibility of imposing restrictions on fishing in California during the COVID-19 pandemic was ended abruptly Thursday morning due to call volume and technological challenges.

The California Fish & Game Commission's emergency meeting was scheduled to consider a proposal to grant the CDFW temporary authority to limit fishing in areas deemed necessary due to the coronavirus. "Because of overwhelming call volume, the call will be rescheduled," the agency said in a news release. The date of the re-scheduled meeting will be posted on the Commission’s website.

The 8:30 a.m. call attracted hundreds of callers, many of whom voiced their anger. That overwhelmed the call system as callers were urged to mute their lines, according to this report by the Sacramento Bee. Some members of the Commission board reportedly could not join the call.

Commission President Eric Sklar and California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Director Charlton H. Bonham made the following joint statement Thursday night:


"We are very appreciative of the passion we heard from those that were able to join this morning’s call. It is clear that the call volume was overwhelming and the technology wasn’t ready. We acknowledge that this is a challenge as we attempt to navigate new technology for meetings. We are frustrated by what happened today and are looking for a remedy now. We understand that many members of the public and media were unable to join the call and because we also understand the importance to many of you, we need to ensure that you have an opportunity to provide input."


The public can make comments for the record at fgc@fgc.ca.gov, the statement said.

Thursday’s chaos was apparently spurred on by the belief that the state was considering a statewide fishing ban, prompting a variety of cutting comments (listen to the audio) during the short time the call was live.

In the statement by Sklar and Bonham, the Commission says closing fishing statewide is not part of the emergency proposal:

"We also want to make it crystal clear that today’s proposed decision was not about banning fishing statewide or locally. We are not contemplating statewide closure. The decision is to help prepare us to work with counties and tribes to make those decisions based on their requests. We are working on a tailored and surgical approach based on local needs and knowledge. We have already received some of these requests. Today’s proposed action was an effort to become more nimble and ready to react when asked by a local entity to act. …


"Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Commission was set to discuss whether or not to temporarily grant authority to CDFW to decide whether to delay, restrict, or suspend sport or recreational fishing in order to prevent and mitigate public health risks that may arise when people travel for fishing trips or congregate while participating in available fishing opportunities. CDFW and the Commission have received requests from county representatives and local health authorities requesting delays to sport or recreational fish openers such as the Eastern Sierra trout opener scheduled for April 25, 2020."

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Catch More Bass on a Jerkbait in the Cooler Months

Catch More Bass on a Jerkbait in the Cooler Months

This one simple trick will trigger more bass strikes on a jerkbait during the fall months.

Understanding Reel Retrieve Ratios and How it Affects Lure Presentations

Understanding Reel Retrieve Ratios and How it Affects Lure Presentations

Increase a lure’s effectiveness by pairing it with the ideal reel speed.

Hobie MirageDrive 360 Kayak Propulsion: Amazing Control and Power

Hobie MirageDrive 360 Kayak Propulsion: Amazing Control and Power

The Hobie MirageDrive 360 pedal propulsion system is the pinnacle of kayak control with more efficient fin designs, glide technology and allows the boat to be moved in any direction.

Action and Power Ratings- How to Choose the Right Bass Rod

Action and Power Ratings- How to Choose the Right Bass Rod

Most fishing rods feature both an action and a power rating, but what do those ratings mean and how do you use them to select the right rod for different scenarios? In this video, outdoor writer and tackle specialist Shane Beilue breaks down the difference between a rod blank’s action and power and discusses what the various ratings of each mean.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

In need of a rugged container to sip from in the backcountry? We've got you covered. From tumblers to bottles to flasks (and even clever bottle openers), we've rounded up some of the best bar gear for the outdoors.Ultimate Outdoor Bar Gear Roundup The Deck

Ultimate Outdoor Bar Gear Roundup

Chelsie Walters and Jessyca Sortillon - August 31, 2020

In need of a rugged container to sip from in the backcountry? We've got you covered. From...

Get ready to braise ground venison with all the traditional chili ingredients, directly on the grill, for a smokin' hot take on this comfort food classic.Smoked Venison Chili Recipe Wild Game

Smoked Venison Chili Recipe

Eva Shockey - October 16, 2020

Get ready to braise ground venison with all the traditional chili ingredients, directly on the...

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures?5 Great Lures For Bluegills Other Freshwater

5 Great Lures For Bluegills

Stephen D. Carpenteri - March 10, 2011

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures?

This Elk Venison Patty Melt Recipe makes the perfect wild game sandwich. Elk burger patties are accompanied by melted Swiss cheese, caramelized onions, and Thousand Island dressing and then pressed in between two toasted and golden brown pieces of rye bread.Elk Venison Patty Melt Recipe Wild Game

Elk Venison Patty Melt Recipe

Kristy Crabtree - October 27, 2020

This Elk Venison Patty Melt Recipe makes the perfect wild game sandwich. Elk burger patties...

See More Trending Articles

More Conservation & Politics

Op/Ed from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.NSSF: De-Platforming Gun Sites a Dark Harbinger Conservation & Politics

NSSF: De-Platforming Gun Sites a Dark Harbinger

Joe Bartozzi - January 15, 2021

Op/Ed from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

Perspective: It's nearly as patriotic as voting, volunteering for military service or paying taxes.Punching a Tag is Most American Thing a Hunter Can Do Conservation & Politics

Punching a Tag is Most American Thing a Hunter Can Do

Andrew McKean - December 10, 2020

Perspective: It's nearly as patriotic as voting, volunteering for military service or paying...

These field reports from across the country range from the serious to the ridiculous.Game Warden Stories: 40 Deer Poached, Drunk Hunting, Not Telling the Truth Conservation & Politics

Game Warden Stories: 40 Deer Poached, Drunk Hunting, Not Telling the Truth

Game and Fish Staff - December 11, 2020

These field reports from across the country range from the serious to the ridiculous.

See More Conservation & Politics

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Game & Fish App

Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now