Posts Tagged ‘wild fish

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.

22
Sep
13

Wild Fish Endangered: Salmon Confidential Documentary

Wild Salmon in B.C. are suffering diseases heretofore unknown in the waters for returning wild salmon. Why? Some strongly believe the scientific data shows nearby fish farms are breeding disease that is infecting the passing wild salmon.

To whatever degree you mentally invest in wild, natural, nature, the environment, whatever your sense of balance in the natural scheme of things…this issue of fish farming and the possible/probable infestation of wild strains of fish should cause alarm.

Also, factor in the food supply (I wish advocates would leave out the “children” emotionality of their arguments…enough about the children emotional appeals on every topic under the sun) and the dangers of marketing tainted food. Watch the trailer for Salmon Confidential. The actual release is scheduled for mid October. More details here as well.

Industries, jobs, money infused into local economies, government stone walling, doctored research, expert vs. expert, advocates on both sides make these discussions/debates/arguments tiresome after awhile. Nonetheless, something is wrong in B.C. and many other waters around the world where fish farming is established.

wild salmon

20
May
12

Wild Fish v. Hatchery Fish: When Is Enough Data Captured to Convince

“Since the mid-1970s, large increases in hatchery programs in the U.S., Canada, Russia and Japan have released billions of fish into the water. And the increasing global demand for salmon has resulted in calls to further expand hatchery production, especially in Russia and Alaska. In a 2010 open letter to Alaska hatcheries, seafood processors proposed increasing pink salmon hatchery returns by 25%-115% over the next five years. Similarly, Russian hatchery managers stated in 2010 that Russia is planning to build 23 new hatcheries that would increase the country’s hatchery production by 66% or 680 million fish.

“The scale and magnitude of our current hatchery production system is enormous,” says Rand. “Five billion juvenile salmon are released each year worldwide, and the prospect of additional increases in hatchery production is worrisome for the long-term survival of wild salmon.” (more at Science Blog)

HATCHERY FISH ‘DOMESTICATION’

JAY NICHOLAS HAS SOME GREAT INFO 

This a very complex issue for this C Average Student. Dams, Irrigation, Logging, Hatcheries, Commercial Fishing, Pollution, oh and Sea Lions, on and on contributing factors go. And, the propensity is to substitute one man made management style over the top of the previous one. We mucked it up and the mean time, the Put ‘n Take Crowd wants their damn fish! I am glad others are taking on this puzzle and that they put it in terms I can understand…Cliff Notes so to speak.

All the good intentions aside, it does come down to prior investments, jobs, business versus a probable crisis in maintaining/restoring the original wild strains. As much as everyone readily paints business interests as inherently bad and the problem, I at first will always point to government management or mismanagement as a greater culprit in messing things up…then poor stewardship by businesses…and the oblivious ‘I want mine’ by the ‘put in take’ crowd helps perpetuate the whole mess. 

While it feels good to quote some Native American slogan about preserving some resource, I wonder how Oregon and Washington…two states that have had overwhelming Democrat power bases for decades….two very liberal/progressive states…two very eco conscious states have made such a mess of the fisheries. All those Democrat Governors have been silent and void of leadership on these issues. Of course, I’m only a C Student…so what do I know?

24
Apr
12

“Hatcheries Suck” by Steven Hawley

H/t to Horatio Nailknot/FB in pointing me to this pointed piece about man’s meddlesome ways with Wild Fish via hatcheries and cherry-picked science:

“For reasons that have little to do with biological health, or even sanity, the Obama Administration and key members of Congress think this is a swell idea. Hatcheries suck because they’ve masked a staggering loss of biological diversity and abundance. With a century of hatchery experimentation in the rearview mirror, nearly everything has been lost for Pacific salmon in the Lower 48, including a grip on reality. Most weeks of salmon season here in the Columbia Basin, it’s possible to track down a forecast from some misguided guide, federal mouthpiece, blogger or outdoor pundit chortling about the “near record returns of kings over Bonneville Dam.” This is so patently false it shouldn’t even qualify as a delusion.” DrakeMag

NATIVE FISH SOCIETY

27
Oct
11

Best Intentioned Management vs. Wild Fish

“We measured lifetime reproductive success of the first two generations of steelhead trout that were reared in captivity and bred in the wild after they were released. By reconstructing a three‐generation pedigree with microsatellite markers, we show that genetic effects of domestication reduce subsequent reproductive capabilities by 40% per captive‐reared generation when fish are moved to natural environments. These results suggest that even a few generations of domestication may have negative effects on natural reproduction in the wild and that the repeated use of captive‐reared parents to supplement wild populations should be carefully reconsidered.”   Hatchery Impact on Wild Fish via Native Fish Society  

Tweaking them, counting them, milking them, dumping them, tagging them, 'managing' them.

Weakening The Gene Pool

 

04
Dec
10

Biotech Salmon? Science, Progress, Engineering

“For the last 15 years, AquaBounty, the Massachusetts-based company that is seeking FDA approval to create and sell biotech salmon, has been working on creating a fast-growing salmon by combining the genes of a Chinook salmon and an ocean pout—an eel-like fish. In September, an FDA staff analysis concluded that the genetically-modified salmon is safe to eat and poses little harm to the environment.” (more here)

The Losers (Edward Kay)

“The FDA is poised to put the first genetically engineered salmon on our dinner plates despite the fact that 91 percent of Americans feel that genetically engineered fish and meat should not be allowed into the marketplace. That so many Americans oppose what will likely be a milestone decision about the future of seafood should be sounding alarm bells at the FDA.” (more genetic insult)

So the Obama Administration seems no more brilliant than the W Administration re our fisheries. The preoccupation with the Science Diety will lead to ever more bio designs that do not hold sacred anything natural, native or wild.

“Andrew Pollack writes in the NYTimes that Genetically Altered Salmon Get Closer to the Table about AquaBounty‘s GM super-fish which…

“…contains a growth hormone gene from a Chinook salmon as well as a genetic on-switch from the ocean pout, a distant relative of the salmon. Normally, salmon do not make growth hormone in cold weather. But the pout’s on-switch keeps production of the hormone going year round. The result is salmon that can grow to market size in 16 to 18 months instead of three years.”

It still needs FDA approval, but as you can imagine, luddites and religious wingnuts of all flavors are already protesting noisily.”   Maximizing Progress

Notice how easily the Science is God crowd throw the names about re those calling into question the soundness of such decisions? “luddites and religious wingnuts”? Seems to be the response anymore to those that question. Name call, marginalize, demean and move on to engineering some facet of our life toward ‘progress’. Don’t question science and progress.




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