Well we've had a lot of interested talk here and the only thing I can add is a plug for Trout Unlimited. Each of us, on our own, are rather powerless to do much. Trout Unlimited unites us into an organized, effective group. Most of TU is stream restoration but there is also the ability to stand united on other issues as well.
On the stockers- a lot of them are going to die off one way or the other. The idea about fish being unsafe to eat is a good idea, also maybe have the stocked streams published and limit the stocking to marginal water so that the best water is saved. Once again your local TU chapter is the way to go.
DH is delayed harvest waters. It is catch & release but the first saturday of June until the first saturday of Oct. the fish can be harvested by any kind of bait. This is a way to recycle the fish. From June to Oct. the Fish & Wildlife want people to catch the fish and keep them. This is what F&W call a turn around or clean this section of water out and we will stock this section of water again in starting Oct. with fresh fish.
Now from Oct. to June the DH water are catch & release but people think they can use any thing for bait. Not true it is single hook only
(fly,single hook spinner,etc.-- now this does not mean you can use a plastic worm with scent or flavor on a bait hook either. People think this is OK but it's not) This should be changed. It should be fly only and if you have a child under the age of 12 they can use a single hook spinner. From the age of 13 and up should only fish with a fly in the DH waters.
The F&W management are doing studies now to see if fish can reproduce in the sections of DH waters now. If these section can maybe they will change the water to catch & release year round (lets hope and pray for that.)
There are a lot sections of streams and rivers here in North Carolina that are hatchery stock supported for the public to fish with any kind of bait. What you catch you can keep as long as you only keep 7 and the fish is in the size limit that is nothing under 7 inches long. These streams and rivers are cleaned out in a matter of months. There are people that will follow the stock trucks just to catch these fish to keep. I don't mean keep the limit either. People will catch there limit of 7 and take the fish to their cars or trucks and go right back and do it again until they clean the fish out.
I know we have to buy our fishing licsenes and that is fine but for a resident of this state it is $20 for the fishing licsenes. Just because you spend $20 to fish does not give you the right to keep hundreds or thousands of fish.
AHH thats what DH stands for, that should have came to me if I thought a little harder lol
And no sir buying a FL dosnet give anyone the right to keep tons of fish, I have always said that C&R is the way to go for some waters and species of fish and in those that a little harvest wouldnt hurt thye should make stricker rules on keeps rates.
In MO they use to be able to keep 6 trout in the trout parks, that are stocked daily from march through oct I belive, maybe sept., anyway in the last years they have went to 4. On streams that are wild trout, or stocked only to suplamnet the wild trout, the laws should be changed in most places. With the newer methods of fiberglass mounts they shouldnt even keep a trophy fish to mount, a lenth and girth and pic are all ya need. And just so ya know out of the 200-300 trout I have caught down here I have kept maybe 10 in 2 years, ate two and give one to the little old lady that lives across the stret from one ortwo every so often, and no wild browns all stocker bows.
OnlyMidges mentioned in a post about the out of towners getting a huge bow and keeping it and telling the fly shop owner about it. He mentioned that he could not call the local warden because the shop was full...Why would that prevent him from turning them in? You'll never see a C&R fishery in your area until the public is educated about the importance of obeying the rules and regulations put on a particular stream. My $0.02 worth.
I have noticed here lately the the shop owner has the almighty $ on his mind. Also there has been a couple of sticky fingers in the shop. I know it is a buisness and he has to make $ to stay open but!!!!!!
I agree that no matter if there was a line of people with $ in hand waiting to get in the door a phone call should have been made.
If I had been there and heard them say that I would have been calling.
To be honest, I think there are some internet sites which really encourage and condone "killing your limit" (and maybe a few more). There are several sites I've stumbled across (all non fly fishing focused) that seem to consist primarily of picture after picture (fish porn) of stacks of dead fish.
There are countless strings in some of these sites. The string may start out with a topic "caught my limit today". Then follows a reply "let's see a picture". Original poster "I didn't have my camera, but I'm going back tomorrow". Of course a picture is posted, the bigger and deader the stack the better, and then the follow up replies began -"Great job", "cool pictures","thanks for posting", ... Of course, this soon inspires others to join in the fun.
Some of these sites are also filled with helpful hints and tips. Make sure you kill any small fish you catch. Thinning these small stunted fish will assure future trophies. Of course, the small culls don't count against your limit, since you are doing a public service, by improving the environment and the coons and possums need to eat as well. Of course you can also be helpful when the fish are really biting to keep a double limit, so you can give some fish to some other less skilled anglers, or perhaps for a friend at home who couldn't be here today.
There is one site in mind where just about anything goes, except, never criticize a member for keeping "over his/her limit". The reason being "we don't know the situation" and "who are we to judge".
It's actually tough to even try to be a voice of reason on these sites. The participants very much enjoy the mutual admiration. A long time ago I was actually deregistered from one site, since I violated the golden rule of the site by suggesting there is a certain satisfaction to be gained by "limiting your kill, not killing your limit"
Fortunately there are sites like this and others, I think in some cases it really comes down to a battle for the hearts and minds of folks. I think we can all do our part by responsibly using the resources and trying to set an example.
I have to admit, I try to live by the motto of "live and let live", but I have a tough time with "live and let (wantonly) kill"
As I'm from Australia I can see the problem, we have an Acclimatisation Society,and get fish allocations from the Fisheries Dept,which comes from licence revenue,to stock certain streams/rivers,they also stock the lakes with excess fish,they have bred.
We have just come out of 7-8 year drought and some rivers are starting to recooperate.
Possibly a remedy,could be,have your TU reps,which I presume is Trout Unlimited,which I first read about in the late 60's, pressure the Fish and Wildlife etc,into making the stream/streams/lakes etc,Fly Only, catch & release,until the warmer weather,then allow the harvesting of the fish. This could have advantages,1 The fish could acclimatise to their new enviroment,without being slaughted. 2 The fish could possible, grow,slightly.
Also could the season be opened earlier,to allow for the weather curtain.
Well we started a chapter of TU last nite. So maybe now we can have some kind of control over those that poach fish around here. I was voted in as one of the officals ( VP ) of this chapter and I am going to work as hard as I can to get the fishing problems solved.
Thanks Frank. I hope that now we have a TU chapter things will change around here where I live. We have some nice waters here and they need to be taken care of and thats what we are going to try our best to do.