Combat fishing in Alaska at its finest. By Dave Atcheson
My reasons for fishing vary. Sure, sometimes it’s utilitarian; to fill the freezer, but more often than not it’s about the experience. It’s about connecting to the outdoors, to something larger than myself, the sense of peace and relaxation that only comes streamside.That’s why it’s especially maddening to longtime trout fishers when someone stops and interrupts that flow. On most streams in the US and around the world you wouldn’t encroach within 100 yards of another fisher. If people are going to stop where someone else is, they should always ask before starting to fish and only fish behind the anglers they are intruding upon.
The Eel River is on the brink of disaster, its ocean-going fish species threatened with extinction, its nurturing estuary diked, drained and diminishing.
At the same time, this massive watershed in California’s northwest corner offers the state’s best hope of ensuring a future abundance of wild anadromous fish.
This paradox of the Eel, California’s third largest river system, is driving an urgency to save it while there’s still time. For the Eel’s diverse and often adversarial stakeholders, this is a rare and fleeting opportunity to set aside differences out of a common commitment to what they share.
A University of California and CaliforniaTrout study last month indicated that some species of salmon are in danger of going extinct by the end of this century. Their persistence in modern California is practically miraculous, given the profound alteration of rivers and streams.
To ensure these fish endure, with the added dimension of a changing climate, we must take strong steps. Salmon need help in the stream gravel where they hatch, the pools and floodplains where they grow, the Delta channels that carry them to the ocean, and the rivers they power up in order to spawn and die in the same gravel from which they emerged.
Wild Trout XII: Science, politics, and wild trout management: who’s driving and where are we going?
The Wild Trout Symposium brings together a diverse audience of non-profit conservation groups, media representatives, educators, anglers, fishing guides, government entities, and business interests associated with trout fisheries to exchange technical information and viewpoints on wild trout management and related public policy. Held every three years, each symposium has led to innovative approaches to wild trout management.
The American Sportfishing Association and Southwick Associates created a new series of one-page infographics for all 435 Congressional districts in all 50 states. The 2017 infographics provide fishing participation and economic data at the Congressional district level.
See California-District-4-2.pdf for data on our chapters district under Representative Tom McClintock.
The information in the report and infographics use data from the most recent U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services’ National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, conducted in conjunction with the U.S. Census Bureau, as presented in ASA’s Sportfishing in America report. The study used mapping and population software to hone in on smaller geographic areas in a way that is particularly relevant to members of the U.S. House of Representatives.
See Economic Contributions for the whole report.
Reps. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Jared Huffman (D-CA) and Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) recently secured a twenty-year ban on new mining projects in an ecologically and economically critical region in Southwest Oregon. The areas protected include the watershed of the National Wild and Scenic North Fork Smith River in Oregon, the watershed of Rough and Ready Creek (an eligible Wild and Scenic River and tributary to the National Wild and Scenic Illinois and Rogue rivers), as well as 17 miles of the National Wild and Scenic Chetco River. These rivers are known for their wild salmon and steelhead populations, and provide vital economic, recreational and natural resources to the area.
In 2017, the California State Water Resources Control Board will make a decision that will fundamentally affect rivers and streams that California anglers know and love. This decision could make or break California’s salmon fisheries and the multi-billion dollar commercial and recreational angling economy they support.
Even under the proposed new standards, two-thirds of the natural flow of the Merced, Tuolumne, and Stanislaus Rivers would still be diverted, mainly for agriculture.
Truth is often hard to hear. The truth is that demand for water far exceeds supply in California—and that fish species, in particular, have been shouldering most of the burden of providing water for California, for decades. To keep some of our state’s unique natural heritage alive, we must better balance the allocation of this precious limited resource.
Please help us make sure the water board knows that the angling community unequivocally supports boosting flow standards for the lower San Joaquin River watershed, and reserving at least 40 percent of unimpaired flow for environmental needs.
Read Chandra Ferrari's Blog for the full story.
This December ARC signed a Purchase Agreement to acquire another 5,247 acres of Blue Oak woodland savanna south of El Dorado and west of Highway 49. In 2013-14, ARC acquired a 2,139 acre portion of this ranch fronting the Main Fork of the Cosumnes River. The acquisition of this contiguous landscape would create the largest, contiguous block of protected Blue Oak Woodland in El Dorado County - a Preserve of over 7,385 acres and help preserve the quantity and quality of water flowing downstream to the San Francisco Bay Delta.
Alan Ehrgot of the American River Conservancy reports the acquisition of 10,115 acres adjacent to the Granite Chief Wilderness and the restoration of 3,323 acres. The ARC intends to donate these properties to the Tahoe National Forest as part of the Granite Chief Wilderness area. ARC deserves recognition and congratulations for conceiving, fund raising and completion of these acts in only 3 years.
Article in The Christian Science Monitor by Zack Colman
In an innovative agreement, farmers have joined with environmental groups and state and federal officials to both increase water availability and restore the natural landscape. Although the plan focuses on just one section of the state, it is an agriculturally significant one – the Yakima Basin. And it’s comprehensive: The plan includes voluntary conservation programs, building new water-storage reservoirs, and adding structures to dams that would help fish seek cooler waters as they migrate upstream. The framework, in place at the state level since 2012, has begun to show promise, even though federal approval by the US Congress is still needed for full implementation.