I received an email notification from ODFW (Oregon Dept. Fish Wildlife) re a special event where some lucky angler has a chance at $1m dollars.
“Oregon may have a million dollar fish
If we do, one lucky angler could catch it in Crane Prairie, Dexter or Blue River Reservoir. All three are included in the nationwide “Wanna Go Fishing for Millions” contest sponsored by Cabelas, Outdoor Channel and several fish and wildlife agencies (including ODFW). See more details and register to participate.“
I was intrigued that a State agency had joined forces with Cabela’s. I also noticed one of the Oregon fisheries was Crane Prairie Res., which use to be a premier fishing destination until the bass were introduced. But then given this is a nation wide contest that really doesn’t matter:
“Eligible Species of Freshwater Fish:
Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Spotted Bass, White Bass, Walleye, Perch, Cutthroat Trout, Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout, Lake Trout, Striped Bass (Striper), Wiper, Crappie, Blue Gill, Channel Cat.”
So there is some place in the participating states that has one fish that is tagged for the million bucks, if you are the first to photo, de-tag and send proof of catch. There are other prizes as well for others that catch tagged fish but too late to qualify for the first fish caught status. Judging by the rules, it appears all manner of typical fishing methods are allowed. The rules state the handling of the fish as such…
“FISHING & LOGGING:
“Registered participants may only catch and log eligible fish during the Fishing Period, and must photograph their fish with an eligible tag showing and still attached, prior to removing the tag and releasing the fish.”
Well I imagined there must be more precise explanations on how to remove the tag and release the fish given all the methods that must be allowed. I mean Cabela’s does care if the fish survives don’t they? Yet really no where in any of the literature is there anything past the sponsors and the prizes that promotes respect for the fish or instructions on how to handle them.
This is so typical. Cabela’s you are making assumptions or clueless or as I suspect, irresponsible on the handling of these species of fish. It is part and parcel with the put ‘n take fisheries and, and of course, typical of ODFW too. Here’s Cabela’s Conservation Platform. Yes they are dedicated to preserving this and that for the sportsmen. But, the emphasis is on the taking not the preserving. I know many of those species are pretty hardy, probably prehistorically hardy, but several aren’t. Cabela’s let’s see something more, in writing, about more than money, sponsors and vague one liner release remarks.