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Solution to a biting problem: Exotics in the wild
Guess its one of those areas that needs some clarification, but also
some education as well.
First, I'd say that we need to follow the law. Period. If the game and
fish folks say "put it back", then the only real way to do anything
about that is to get enough folks on your side to be effective in
changing the law itself.
The argument might be made that the average Joe / Josette may not think
every thing that has been done with game fish introduction is a
necessary evil, since otherwise they might very well not have
opportunity to fish at all. This is a valid point for the natives as
well, in the broader scope too. If the game fish industry were not
established, there would be even less incentive for the law makers to do
what is needed to protect the natives as well as the introduced game
fish from their mutual greatest threat in some areas, habitat
degradation or outright destruction.
Arguments can be made about the evils of the game fish industry, but
the truth is most of us love to fish as well as collect. I know I would
not have cared for the natives were it not for the fact that I had good
experiences growing up through my family going fishing regularly. The
introduction of game fish in my area has not been a significant problem.
Plowing up to the creek bank is, as well as the treatment the ditches
and smaller creeks have received for well over 75 years with intense
logging operations. The recent 20 years being by far the worst, cause
the better the equipment gets at extracting wood from the timber
contracted land, the worse the resulting destruction of the water
The folks doing it really just don't care. But they do like to fish.
Also, they can be influenced if what they are doing becomes significant
to people they care about. Of course the law can be changed to MAKE them
stop, but who will enforce it, Really?
So to take up arms against those would be allies is, in my way of
seeing it, throwing the baby out with the bath water, to put it mildly.
Sport fisher folks may need to be provided with creative ways to get
accurate information, and may need to be given the chance to make
informed decisions, but seriously, why not seek active involvement with
and engagement of these folks instead of confrontation, at least in
Cause the lots of places around the country, the natives need all the
help they can get.
All that to say this, IMO just keep it simple, a good way to define
exotics is to mean released or otherwise escaped and established in the
wild aquarium hobby fish of the commonly accepted types, be they
tropicals or not, that are causing the natives problems. If you don't
know the situation with a particular fish, if it's big enough, try
cooking up a mess of um and eating them. Why were you fishing anyway?
The Halls wrote:
> I tend to believe the introduced natives shouldn't be returned, but I know
> I'm in the minority...especially in CA where some Killie enthusiasts went
> after some introduced exotic killies and when accosted by Fish and Game
> people were told to dump them in the ditch right where they were even
> though that isn't where they were collected!
> > From: Herb Harris <top_side at geocities_com>
> > To: nfc at actwin_com
> > Subject: Re: No Subject
> > Date: Tuesday, June 23, 1998 4:48 PM
> > Dave,
> > Interesting question, where do you stand on it?
> > Herb
> > The Halls wrote:
> > >
> > > Once caught never released....
> > > In CA would that apply to just about everything you catch since most
> > > everything is introduced? or is there a distinction between exotics
> > > introduced NA natives?
> > >
> > > Dave HAll