Jessica Cejnar / Friday, Dec. 20, 2019 @ 4:49 p.m. / Tribes

(UPDATE) Resighini Rancheria Claims Win In Appeals Case In Conflict With Yurok Tribe Over Fishing Rights

Editor's note: The Yurok Tribe disputes the Resighini Rancheria's characterization of the outcome of this case. The headline has been changed to more accurately reflect that. The Wild Rivers Outpost will have more information on this case and its impacts in the future.


Press release from the Resighini Rancheria:

Yurok Tribe Does Not Have Exclusive Tribal

Fishing Rights on the Lower Klamath River


Klamath, CA – The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a finding last week in the tribal fishing case Yurok Tribe v. Resighini Rancheria and Gary Dowd. The Court found that the Yurok Tribe does not have an exclusive fishing right on the lower Klamath River. This protects the recognition of a tribal fishing right of the Resighini Rancheria.

In the case, the Yurok Tribe sought to prosecute elder Gary Dowd, a Resighini Rancheria tribal citizen, for traditionally fishing in usual and accustomed places on the Klamath River. The Yurok Tribe contends that Mr. Dowd relinquished his rights to fish within the Yurok Reservation when he elected to not become a member of the Yurok Tribe under the Hoopa-Yurok Settlement Act in 1988. Instead, Mr. Dowd elected to remain a Resighini Rancheria tribal citizen where he has always been a member. “We are pleased by the Court’s decision. We will continue to protect our culture and fishing rights on the Klamath River, just as our ancestors have done since time immemorial. As original stewards, Resighini Rancheria will continue to co-manage our shared precious natural resources,” said Chairperson Fawn Murphy.

Established in 1993, the Yurok Tribe is the largest Tribe in California with over 6,500 members. Established in 1937, the Resighini Rancheria is a small federally recognized Tribe with only 150 members. Resighini members are Yurok people, traditionally known as Poliklah and Nr-er-ner. The reservation of the Resighini Rancheria is located on the lower Klamath River.


Resighini Rancheria Wins Round of Fish War With Yurok Tribe; Tribe Vows To 'Protect Struggling Salmon Runs'

FISH WAR: Yurok Tribe Sues Resighini Rancheria Over 'Unauthorized Fishing' on Tribal Territory


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