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Entries in KAF (4)


KAF Needs Your Support to Protect Fishing

As a kid, I didn’t just love to fish.

I lived to fish.

Over the years --- and usually fishing --- I’ve met many who felt the same way about their childhood.

Reading comments on Facebook and in fishing forums, I can see that many adults never outgrow that feeling. That’s good. (And that passion is what inspired me to write Why We Fish.)

In fact, the world would be a better place if more people felt that way. I’m not talking about forsaking a family, giving up a job, and throwing away responsibility to go fishing 24/7. I’m talking about recognizing the value of fishing for relaxation, enjoyment of nature, and as a dangling carrot to get you from Monday to Friday.

 I'm talking about time spent with children and grandchildren that allows you to share knowledge and experience, as well as pass on the passion for a wholesome activity that has brought you so much happiness.

Sadly, many who do not fish are rising to power in all levels of government. They come from a background that says preservation --- look but don’t touch --- is better than conservation --- sustainable use of a resource through good stewardship. Some are adamantly anti-fishing, with close ties to extreme environmental groups. Others simply give no thought or value to recreational fishing and would consider its demise an acceptable loss for implementation of their agendas.

What can be we about this? Well, we could take them fishing. That really is the best solution. But we might have to abduct some of them to get them out of their cubicles, and that could get complicated and messy and charges might be filed.

The alternative is to organize and stand strong for recreational fishing. I know, I know: Fishing is your escape from things like organizing and standing strong. It takes you back to childhood, when living to fish was pure and uncomplicated.

I understand and respect that feeling. But I also know that neglecting to defend what you love against an overzealous enemy is the surest way to lose it.

The irony is that those of us who fish --- more than 40 million --- far outnumber those who would take it away. But the latter are committed to a preservationist agenda, while we who fish are committed to fishing more than we are protecting our right to fish.

Or at least that’s the way that it has been.

“We’re the biggest recreational sporting group in the country, but we’ve hardly been organized enough to tie our shoes,” said Bob Eakes, owner of Red Drum Tackle in Buxton, N.C.

Eakes and his business are among the first casualties in this war against recreational fishing, where many of the early volleys are being fired at saltwater anglers. Under the guise of protecting birds and turtles, the National Park Service (NPS) elected to side with three environmental groups and shut down access to nearly half of the world-famous surf fishery at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

“Twenty-one national parks are waiting to see how this plays out,” Eakes explained. “And we’re starting to see issues in freshwater as well.”

On inland fisheries thus far, recreational fishing is being attacked mostly by groups who want to ban lead fishing tackle and associations and municipalities who use concerns about the spread of invasive species to shut down access.

But more is on the way. By executive order, the new federal National Ocean Council can decide where you can and cannot fish on oceans, coastal waters, and the Great Lakes, and it has the authority to extend its reach inland to rivers and lakes.

That’s why your support for the Keep America Fishing campaign is so vitally needed. And if you live in Florida, or fish there, you also should check out Keep Florida Fishing. The list of initiatives to ban or severely restrict fishing there is growing every day. Both these sites can educate you about the threats to fishing and what you can do about them.

“No one has been trumpeting the message that the public’s right to fish is at stake. But with Keep America Fishing, we now have a way to do that,” said Eakes.


Closures 'Corrupt, Unfunded and Unnecessary'

Jim Matthews at FishRap is reporting that "the California State Fish and Game Commission adopted sweeping closures of ocean waters off the Southern California coast, eliminating sportfishing and most other uses in these areas in a vote Dec. 15 in Santa Barbara. 

"In adopting the regulations, mandated as part of the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA), three words come immediately to mind about the process: corrupt, unfunded and unnecessary. The process has been flawed from the beginning."

Folks, as I've warned repeatedly, this is what could be coming nationwide, courtesy of the National Ocean Council.

Follow what's happening at FishRap, Keep America Fishing, the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation, Center for Coastal Conservation, and Recreational Fishing Alliance.

Also, check out the works of Capt. Len Belcaro at Big Game Fishing Journal. He is doing an excellent job of exposing this attempted big-government theft of our right to fish.

Get active and get involved. The future of fishing depends on your activism.


Do Your Homework, Please!




All right, class, I know that you want to finish up here so that you can get out and go fishing. But we have one more topic to cover.

First, let's . . .  Wait a minute. Johnny, is that a worm hanging out of your mouth?

You're keeping them warm until you can go fishing?

Didn't I see you out in the pasture across the road turning over cow patties to get those worms?


Never mind. I don't want to know.

Let's try again. All right, class, I want you to go to Keep America Fishing(KAF). At the very least make it one of your favorites. Better yet, make it your home page.

Sign up for e-mails that will deliver news and alerts to your mailbox.

Now, Liberty Rose, why is this important?

That's right, recreational fishing is threatened as never before. And, Johnny, give me an example of how KAF can help.

I know, I know, it's tough to talk with your mouth full. Try.

Excellent! That's right. KAF mobilized 43,000 anglers to help defeat a proposed lead ban on fishing tackle.

Okay, school's out. Go fishing!

Photo information: By the way, that girl did catch that 40-inch-plus northern pike all by herself. I watched her and took the photo, while fishing out of North Knife Lake Lodge in Manitoba.


Help Keep America Fishing

Hey, make a $30 donation to Keep America Fishing --- your friend and mine --- and you will receive a free Rapala Pro Bass Fishing game for Nintendo Wii bundled with a rod and reel adapter for your Wii controller. That's a $49.99 value.

Your donation will help preserve our right to fish.