The Department of Fisheries Resources Management, with almost 200 employees, over a $20 million annual budget and a three-state work area (north-central Idaho, northeastern Oregon, and southeastern Washington) corresponding to the Nez Perce ancestral homeland, is one of the largest and most successful tribal fisheries programs in the United States.  The program has been instrumental in restoring Columbia basin salmonids wisely, and in so doing, protecting and enhancing fishing rights reserved by the Tribe in its treaties with the United States.  The Department is recognized by federal and state fisheries co-managers, land management agencies, those entities involved in managing the Columbia River hydropower system, other tribes and the public, as being indispensable to the restoration of fisheries resources in the Pacific Northwest.


Department Management Plan
Honoring Nations article

Conservation Enforcement

Natural/Cultural Resource Protection, with an emphasis on Anadromous Salmonids.  Enforcement of tribal fish and game regulations, and the protection of tribal members exercising treaty fishing, hunting, and gathering rights

Contact: Chief Adam Villavicencio, Conservation Enforcement
208-621-3528 |

Harvest Management Division

The purpose of the Harvest Division is to develop and implement a harvest monitoring program that incorporates treaty fishing rights as guaranteed under the Treaty of 1855. The division looks to maximize Nez Perce fishing opportunities at our on-reservation and at our off-reservation usual and accustomed fishing areas.  Tribal fisheries are implemented based on the actual returns to our treaty fishing areas.  Harvest staff is generally responsible for:

  • Assisting the Tribe in setting fishing seasons,

  • Preparation of harvest plans,

  • Monitoring and reporting tribal harvest, and

  • Helping the Tribe address harvest and harvest-related issues as they arise.


  • Joe Oatman,¬†Deputy Department Manager/Harvest Division Director
    208-816-6641 |

  • Jack Yearout,¬†Harvest Project Leader¬†¬†208-621-14638

Production Division

Production of anadromous fish, stocking of trout ponds, lamprey translocation, hatchery facility operation & maintenance, and co-management Snake Basin fish production.


  • Becky Johnson, Production Division Director
    208-621-4629 |

  • Mike Tuell, Production Division Deputy Director/SRBA Coordinator

Research Division

The Research Division is responsible for gathering the data necessary to assess the success of operations in achieving the biological, physical, and harvest management goals described in the DFRM Management Plan. Research Division provides data driven evaluations and adaptive management recommendations, working towards, healthy anadromous fish populations in areas of abundance, survival, productivity, distribution and diversity.




Watershed Division

The purpose of the Watershed Division is to protect and restore watersheds and fisheries resources throughout Nez Perce Territory, which are critical for future generations.  This work has its roots in protecting tribal sovereignty and treaty rights reserved under the Treaty of 1855.  These activities are accomplished using a holistic approach, which encompasses entire watersheds, ridge-top to ridge-top, emphasizing all cultural aspects.