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Monday
Jan032011

Going Green Is a Good Idea with These Guys

"Going green" sometimes is more about feeling good than actually doing good, especially when the government is involved and forcing changes in products and behavior that people don't want.

But when it's voluntary, going green always is a good thing, and Greenfish is one of the good guys. Through its sale of innovative angling-related products, it promotes sustainable and responsible fishing.

Recycled Fish is another of the good guys, and I'm a proud member of its board of directors. It's all about living a lifestyle of stewardship both on and off the water.

Check out both sites and get involved to protect and promote recreational angling.

Monday
Dec272010

Fish Food for Thought

Well, well . . .The lionfish may be adaptable, but it appears that this invader from the Pacific (See I Blame Picard below.) is not so smart.

Instead of being content to crowd out and devour native species in the Keys and up the Atlantic coast, it also has moved west. It was spotted this fall around offshore oil rigs off Louisiana, according to The Advocate

As Chef Philippe Parolaenthusiastically will attest, Louisiana is not a hospitable place for edible fish, especially when those fish are exotic species. An angler himself, Parola is doing all that he can to promote consumption of Asian carp, which are threatening native species from the bayous to the Great Lakes. Considering this recent discovery around the oil rigs, he likely will have lionfish recipes available shortly.

In the Bahamas, meanwhile,Maurice "Mojo" White already has experience preparing this invader for the table.

Monday
Dec272010

Bureaucrats Can't Improve a Day on the Water. But they Sure as Hell Can Ruin It 

 

For at least the next two years, the greatest threat nationally to the future of recreational angling will come from the federal government. More specifically, it will come from Dr. Jane Lubchenco and her National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce.

 If President Obama is re-elected, then that threat likely will not only persist but grow because of the structure that Lubchenco and her environmental stalwarts are putting in place. If he is not, the structure still will be there, meaning the threat will be as well, although possibly on a lesser scale.

One leg of that structure is the National Ocean Council (NOC), borne from the Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force. (See post below: A Ban on Recreational Fishing? Not Yet . . .)

The other is Catch Shares, a strategy that is supposed to be about conservation, but really is about federal management and control. But while the NOC would allow federal intrusion into all waters, Catch Shares is directed at marine fisheries, both commercial and recreational.

 At the American Thinker, Mike Johnson presents a revealing piece about Lubchenco, NOAA, and Catch Shares. The introduction should be enough to hook you:

Continued

Friday
Dec242010

I Blame Picard

 

This is a lionfish. The native range of this beautiful fish with poison spines is the western Pacific Ocean, thousands of miles from the United States. But now it is firmly established from the Bahamas and the Keys up to the Carolinas.

 And, as the Wall Street Journal and others are reporting,  its population is exploding, as it crowds out and eats native species, including juvenile snapper and grouper, as well as parrotfish. The latter isn't important as a sport fish, but it is a vital chain in  the ocean ecosystem as its grazing keeps algae from overgrowing coral reefs.

How did the lionfish come to be in U.S. waters?

Continued

 

Friday
Dec242010

What You Can Do

If you want to help protect recreational angling, as well as your right to fish, you should join a fisheries-focused conservation organization. There is strength in numbers. As Benjamin Franklin told the Continental Congress, "If we don't hang together, we'll all hang separately."

Some good choices include B.A.S.S., Trout Unlimited, and the Coastal Conservation Association(CCA).

CCA is especially a good choice if you fish marine waters. An example of its good work is the Building Conservation Habitat Program.

Just recently Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal joined CCA and Shell Oil Company in announcing a new parternship that includes recreational anglers, the state, and business. With that commitment, Shell will donate $1.5 million to CCA's program.

Independence Island in Barataria Bay near Grand Isle will be one of the first beneficiaries. Formerly one of Louisiana's most popular fishing destinations, the island lost much of its fisheries habitat to coastal erosion and subsidence. Now it will be restored.

 Jindal said, "CCA's Building Conservation Habitat Program is a long-term commitment from the angling community to the incredible natural resources of Louisiana. Partnerships like the one announced today are a critical component for helping our citizens get back on their feet after the oil spill and preserving the beauty of coastal Louisiana for generations to come."