Archive for April 8th, 2014

08
Apr
14

The Catch & Release Obsession

photography-trout-release-chronomid-SwittersBQuite a few of you non-fly fishers, who primarily drop by SwittersB for my photographic efforts, write and ask why I kill such beautiful fish. A very few have picked up on my past notations about ‘the fish was released unharmed’ and wonder why I don’t harvest fish.

If one peruses fly fishing writing, you quickly surmise a fixation with the fish must be released unharmed. It is almost a given that we rarely kill a fish and we must pay particular attention to the preservation of wild trout so as to maintain the genetic stock of what may have been the original, wild residents of a stream.

Somewhere along the way, I have unquestionably bought into all this and never question it. It just seems the right thing to do. I have kept hatchery trout in numbers on camping trips only to waste them in a cooler sans ice. After that happened and I put that bag of trout in a garbage can and set the metal lid down with a clang, I have rarely killed a fish beyond hatchery salmon or wild salmon in Alaska. The real benefit is I really don’t appreciate the taste of most fish. An occasional piece of halibut, fish and chips or fish tacos are about it. A few pieces of smoked salmon, some red snapper, that’s it. So I have no desire to harvest beautiful trout to eat them. I have no need to kill something to satisfy a primal need to conquer. 

I am not judging those that harvest hatchery fish or plentiful wild fish. Decimating populations in fragile watersheds or lakes is unacceptable to me. The connection to the habitat and the vulnerability of the fish is missing for the fisher solely concerned for the kill.

So that is my answer for those that have written about my killing or not killing trout. Just at a very guttural level I think the fish I pursue are beautiful, whether barely covering the palm of the hand or taking two hands to hoist them. They give me a different kind of food that benefits my mind, my well being.

08
Apr
14

Vines & Briars About to Spring

An old, historic farm house and outbuilding. The farm house is maintained as best as possible by volunteers, but the outbuilding is losing the preservation battle. Cracks in the brick, intrusive, prying vines and decay are having their winning ways. Holes and cracks are already active habitat for birds. The vines and briars are sprouting to life and soon will further force their way into nooks and crannies and ever so powerfully loosen the structure. Spring in coming to life and soon the tired structure will be encased in vines and briars. 

Photography-old farm-vines-brick-old boards-birds-SwittersB




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