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Entries in recreational angling (4)

Saturday
Jan152011

Send Me Your Links!

If you are a member of a group that represents the interests of recreational fishermen, while promoting responsible stewardship of our resources, please send me a link to your organization's website.

I want The Activist Angler to become a connector for uniting fishermen in defense of their rights to fish and in helping them deal with the many additional issues that confront sportfishing in the 21st century.

Saturday
Jan152011

AA Term of the Week: Spatial Planning

Spatial planning is a strategy devised by the Obama Administration to determine where you can and cannot fish. Here is party line about need for spatial planning.

 Common tactic by big-government proponents is to identify a problem where none exists so that they can implement their “solution.” You see that right now with internet regulation and proposed resurrection of the Fairness Doctrine, which is anything but fair.

 Using spatial planning, the National Ocean Council will “zone” uses of our waters to avoid user conflicts --- the problem that doesn’t really exist, at least not on a scale that requires big-government micro-management. It will decide where we can do what on public waters.

 Of course, we won’t lose the right to fish all at once. We’ll lose a little bit here, a little bit there, as specific waters are “zoned” against recreational angling to better protect against us against those nasty user conflicts.  It will be death by a thousand cuts instead of by one fatal blow.

 Yes, user conflicts occasionally do occur. Possibly you’ve been involved in one. Do you think spatial planning would have solved it? If so, please tell me about it.

Thursday
Jan132011

Catch Shares Coming to a Fishery Near You

 

Below is an article that I wrote about Catch Shares for ESPN Outdoors, which no longer is on the wordwide web. That's why I'm publishing it again. If you fish saltwater, you need to know about Catch Shares, yet another attempt by the Obama Administration to expand federal management of our waters --- even for recreational anglers.

As you can learn from the Gloucester Times, which reports about this issue on a regular basis, commercial fishermen would be more impacted by this fishy version of "cap and trade" than would be recreational anglers.

If advocates of sport fishing are not ever-vigilant, however, this over-reaching administration could limit recreational participation with this policy. Considering that sports anglers harvest less than 5 percent of saltwater finfish, yet contribute just as much to the nation’s economy as commercial fishing (more than $80 billion annually), utilizing Catch Shares in a recreational fishery seems exactly the wrong thing to do. It would both discourage participation and cost coastal communities millions of dollars, while doing nothing to “rebuild” fisheries.

Here's the article:

 If you’re a recreational angler, Catch Shares are coming to a fishery near you.

As it did with creation of the National Ocean Council, the Obama Administration is following an agenda set by green groups. This time around, that means expanding a management strategy for ocean fisheries that critics say is inherently anti-fishing and really is more about big-government intrusion into the sport than caring for the resource.

Continued

Wednesday
Dec152010

Why anglers aren't environmentalists

 

 

 

 By ROBERT MONTGOMERY

I’m for a stronger Clean Water Act. I want to preserve old-growth forests. I think that it’s a disgrace that our federal government hasn’t acted more decisively to keep invasive species out of the Great Lakes. I believe that we need stiffer regulations to protect our streams from strip mining, our groundwater from herbicides, and our estuaries from the runoff pollution of urban sprawl and farm fields.

But, alas, I’m also an angler, and anglers aren’t environmentalists. It’s not that anglers don’t want to protect the environment. They do. It’s that they don’t want to be called “environmentalists.” They associate that term with agenda-driven campaigns for preservation policies that often are not backed by scientific evidence.

For anglers, “conservationist” is the term of choice. Conservationists believe in both protection and sustainable use of our lands, waters, and other natural resources. They follow an ethical code of behavior and embrace a stewardship philosophy in the tradition of Theodore Roosevelt.

So we have two factions, conservationists and environmentalists, sharing many of the same values, but more often viewing each other as enemies than allies.

Perhaps the most climactic moment of that divide now is occurring as environmentalists embrace a strategy to use Marine Protected Areas and other designations by governments at all levels to deny recreational anglers access to public waters. In doing so, they are shamefully insulting and dismissing a constituency that does more to protect those waters than any other.

Continued