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Sunday, 22 May 2011

I'm Sorry

Saddened About the State of Steelhead

I watch this release of steelhead from some hatchery and can't help but be deeply disappointed.  An incredible race of fish evolved over who knows how many centuries reduced to being "man made".  They're poured into degraded environments so they may return in decent numbers.  You need only look at the unnatural grassy banks of the release point to understand that this environment has been compromised.  I'd love to see a park that had natural vegetation and trails meandering through it instead of a bank reinforced with blast rock and a manicured lawn.

If You Build It

We've missed the boat and we've missed it horribly.  I become very uninterested when I feel like I'm chasing the hatchery truck to my fishing holes.  Money should be spent on improving stream side habitat.  If you build it, they will come?  Wrong!  If you allow it to repair itself, they will return.  Logging to the banks, no longer okay.  Building homes on the banks in a flood plain, same.

A dream

I love the motto of groups like the Western Rivers Conservancy.  Raise money to buy up lands along river corridors, rehabilitate them, provide access to the rivers for all user groups through these properties, and let the resource heal itself and return to its former glory.  I often talk with fishing buddies about how incredible it would have been to fish our rivers before man's influence.  I'd love to fish these rivers with the knowledge of new techniques and the advanced new equipment combined with an intact ecosystem.


We all have needs people.  It's been shown that when bank side vegetation is removed, summer water temperatures can become fatally high for fish.  Root systems of large trees reinforce the banks of a river creating natural pools instead of shifting wide open gravel bars.  These same big trees fall into the streams, shearing water in different directions and digging out new pools.  Additionally, those trees provide hiding and rearing habitat for small trout, steelhead and salmon.  A solid buffer zone of vegetation filters pollutants and sediments.  If we want to restore our streams, we need to restore their riparian zones.  Then, we can leave them to their own devices.  Fish numbers are dwindling due to man's influence--hatcheries, harvest, habitat, and hydro.  Let's put their environments back to their natural state and be reasonable with our harvest.

Please Help

Donate to groups like the Western Rivers Conservancy and other like minded conservation groups.

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