New rule prohibiting octopus hunting takes effect Sunday

SEATTLE - A new rule making it illegal to hunt and kill giant Pacific octopuses at more than a dozen Puget Sound dive sites takes effect this weekend.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) says the new rule provides more protection for the species and comes nearly a year after a scuba diver legally captured and killed one off Alki Point in West Seattle. That incident sparked a huge public outcry - prompting the WDFW to consider new harvesting regulations.

This past summer, the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission voted to ban all recreational harvesting of giant Pacific octopuses at the following seven sites:

  • Deception Pass north of Oak Harbor

  • Seacrest Park Coves 1, 2 and 3 near Alki Point in West Seattle

  • Alki Beach Junk Yard in West Seattle

  • Three Tree Point in Burien

  • Redondo Beach in Des Moines

  • Les Davis Marine Park adjacent to the Les Davis Fishing Pier in Tacoma

  • Days Island Wall in Tacoma

The rule takes effect Oct. 6. More information about each of the sites can be found online.