April 7, 2003

       Weekly News Archives

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National

U.S. Senate Passes Invasive Weeds Bill

On March 4, the U.S. Senate passed legislation sponsored Senator Larry Craig that would provide financial support to states to combat invasive weeds on public and private land. Senate Bill 144 authorizes the appropriation of $100 million a year for fiscal years 2003 through 2007 and

requires 50% of the project's cost to be funded through non-federal sources.

 

S. 144 was passed by unanimous consent and reported to the House Resources committee.

 


ESA Amendment introduced - Would require scientific evidence

Would require scientific evidence

   Senator Craig Thomas of Wyoming has introduced legislation to require scientific evidence that a species be threatened before it can be proposed for listing under the Endangered Species Act.  Thomas said:  "My bill (S.369) will begin to provide order, making the ESA more effective  for local landowners, public land managers,

 communities, and state governments."

 

   The bill "establishes minimum requirements for a listing petition, including: an analysis of the status of the species; its range; population trends and threats, and if sufficient biological information exists to support a recovery program.  Thomas said the listing of particular species should be a scientific decision based on credible data.

 


Officials kill 4 cattle-eating wolves Montana

By JOHN FITZGERALD  Billings Gazette
 

   Billings, Montana – March 27--Four wolves in the Red Lodge pack were shot to death in February after they killed a cow on a ranch near Belfry, Montana.

 

   Ed Bangs, the wolf recovery coordinator for the USFWS in Helena, said the four-member pack had killed several calves in the past year. In December, a rancher notified the service the pack had killed a cow. FWS decided to kill the pack in February.

 

   He said most wolves are afraid of adult cattle and stay away from them. When they begin to take down adult cattle, it's a sign they are losing their fear of the animals and will begin to include them in their regular diet. At this point, "you're just better off getting rid of (the wolves)," Bangs said. He said game was plentiful for the pack. "They were not starving. They just decided to kill some cattle," he said.

   According to the FWS Web site --

http://westerngraywolf.fws.gov -- since 1987 wolves have killed at least 593 sheep, 237 cattle, 57 dogs and 9 llamas. In response, FWS has killed 147 wolves and moved wolves 117 times. These are only the ones reported.  Can you imagine the expense of this entire adventure in fantasy land?)

 

   "Any time you have large predators in an area, they will occasionally take livestock, and this is a burden to the individual producer," Bangs said, so there are programs via private organizations that reimburse ranchers for lost livestock. Bangs said he wasn't sure if the Belfry rancher has applied for reimbursement.

               

   (Sorry, wolves will always be wolves. . . they are not selective gourmets.   There is not and never will be, one class of wolf that love elk and deer and another class that have a taste for beef and lamb. Wolves consume anything that gets in the way of the hunt. If a preference does seem to appear it is probably because domestic animals are easier to catch and kill.  They have fences to restrain them and they are not as fleet of foot.  Someone kindly explain that to the Fish and Wildlife people, the wolf specialists.)


General

Make your garden worm-friendly

Let nature raise your fish bait

   Associated Press - All those earthworms you saw wriggling in the top layers of soil last fall have not gone away; they've just traveled down into the earth to keep warm. As the soil surface warms in spring, these creatures will again rise to near the surface and begin to multiply.

 

   If you want to increase the number of worms in your soil, just provide abundant food and a congenial environment. To a worm, a congenial environment is a moist soil with a near-neutral pH. Food for a worm consists of organic materials such as leaves, grass clippings, manure, peat moss, and compost.

 

   Avoid or minimize tilling the soil, not because it chops up worms, but because it burns up organic matter -- their food. Also avoid or minimize the use of pesticides because of their harmful effects on earthworms.

 

   Besides increasing worm numbers, caution with pesticides, minimum (or no) tillage, and keeping a soil moist and rich in organic matter are earmarks of good gardening. There's no need to include earthworms with your spring seed orders.

 

   Earthworms eat their way through the soil, taking it in at

 one end and spewing it out the other, as earthworm castings. Charles Darwin reported that each year earthworms brought more than 10 tons per acre of castings to the surface of a field. One hundred square feet of good garden soil can be home to thousands of earthworms.

 

   Physically, worms improve the soil by gently tilling it and creating channels for air, water, and roots. Earthworms' secretions bind soil particles together, giving the earth a porous structure. The journey through a worm's digestive tract also releases plant nutrients locked up in organic materials and even rock particles.

 

   Earthworms benefit plants in even more roundabout ways. Apple scab disease, for example, survives the winter on old apple leaves lying beneath the trees -- but not if earthworms drag the old leaves into the ground and chew them up. Earthworms also help chew up and decompose lawn thatch.

               

   Some gardeners, appreciative of earthworm benefits, purchase earthworms for soil improvement. But the type of earthworm that is most easily grown for sale is the redworm, which is adapted to living in compost or manure piles but would starve in soil.

 


Study shows fish feel no pain

PETA dealt punishing Blow

   The word is that Ingrid Newkirk, president of PETA, is furious. PETA spent millions on its anti-fishing campaign, which primarily is based on its propaganda that hooked fish feel pain like mammals do, and, therefore fishing is barbaric.
 

   A recent report in the academic Reviews of Fisheries Science states the brains of fish are not sufficiently developed to allow them to sense pain or fear. This is the study of James D. Rose, professor of zoology and physiology at the U. of Wyoming. He has been working on

questions concerning neurology for about 30 years

 

   He states that awareness of pain depends on functions of specific regions of the cerebral cortex that fish do not possess.  "Pain is predicated on awareness," he writes. "The key issue is the distinction between nociception and pain. A person who is anesthetized in an operating [room] will still respond physically to an external stimulus, but he or she will not feel pain. Anyone who has seen a chicken with its head cut off will know that, while its body can respond to stimuli, it cannot be feeling pain." 

Courtesy, Jim C. Chapralis, editor Angling Matters jchapralis@ameritech.net , www.anglingmatters.com


Bombardier Teams with Denny Brauer on Lucky # 7 Tune-up Kit

Sturtevant, WI – Bombardier Recreational Products announces the Lucky #7 Tune up Kit promotion from the EvinrudeÒ and JohnsonÒ Genuine Parts and Accessories team. As part of this promotion, Bombardier sponsors the Denny Brauer Sweepstakes with a grand prize dream fishing trip with Team EvinrudeÒ fishing legend, Denny Brauer, at Wildlife Farms, Arkansas.

 

Inside each Lucky #7 Tune up Kit are essential in-season maintenance products, a limited edition Denny Brauer #7 collector’s hat and a sweepstakes entry form. With a retail value of $60, the kit is available for purchase at participating Evinrude and Johnson dealerships and numerous boat shows beginning January 2003. All entries must be postmarked by Aug. 15, 2003 and prizes must be redeemed by Aug. 15, 2004.

The kit includes:

·         One 16-oz. 2+4Ò fuel conditioner

·         One 12-oz. can fuel systems cleaner

·         One 12-oz. can engine tuner

·         One 32-oz. can marine cleaner

·         One all-purpose bucket

·         One limited edition Denny Brauer #7 collector’s hat

·         One Denny Brauer sweepstakes entry form

 

This promotion will strengthen brand loyalty by connecting

consumers, dealers, Denny Brauer, and Evinrude/Johnson Genuine Parts. “The variety of products available in this kit will aid boaters to extend the life of their engines. The added incentive is the Denny Brauer #7 collector’s hat, plus the Denny Brauer sweepstakes entry form,” said Tom Walley, Sales and Marketing Manager, Parts, Accessories and Clothing, Boats and Outboard Engines Division.

 

Sweepstakes participants and their Evinrude/Johnson dealer enter to win the grand prize of a three-day, two-night stay at Wildlife Farms. The trip has a retail value of $3,250 and includes one day fishing with legendary bass angler Denny Brauer, and two days fishing with a professional guide, lodging and meals at Wildlife Farms, plus a travel allowance.

Participants have a chance to win other great products from the Evinrude/Johnson Genuine Parts line: 

·         10 will receive an Evinrude/Johnson stainless steel propeller of their choice

·         50 will receive an engine care combo pack

·         100 will receive a $5 Engine ChecksTM coupon good for future purchases of Evinrude/Johnson Genuine Parts and Accessories

This promotion is available in the United States only. No purchase is necessary to win. Official rules are posted on the Evinrude/Johnson websites. www.evinrude.com   or www.johnson.com, or call 866-EVINRUDE.

http://www.recreation.bombardier.com

 


10th Annual Conference on the St. Lawrence River Ecosystem

"Large River Ecosystems – Under Stress"

   The St. Lawrence River Institute of Environmental Sciences is hosting the 10th Annual International Conference on the St. Lawrence River Ecosystem. This years theme is "Large River Ecosystems - Under Stress." Virtually every continent on the globe has a major river system and most are facing the pressures of effluent concentration, diversion, chemical degradation and invasive species. The conference will explore the protection, 

restoration and conservation of such ecosystems.  

 

   This three day event will be held on May 13-15 at the NavCanada Conference & Training, Cornwall, ON Canada. Info: Christina Collard, ccollard@riverinstitute.com   613-936-6620 x222

 

For schedule see:  http://www.riverinstitute.com/html/callex.html

http://www.riverinstitute.com/html/registration_fees.htm

 

Illinois

Braidwood and LaSalle Lakes Closed until further notice

   SPRINGFIELD, ILL. Because of community concerns, the Department of Natural Resources is announcing the closing of the lakes that provide the cooling water for the nuclear power plants at Braidwood and LaSalle beginning Friday, March 21,

until further notice.

 

   There have been no specific or credible threats to any site in Illinois, according to law enforcement and federal intelligence agencies. All other lakes at nuclear power plant sites remain open on their normal schedules at this time.


Spring trout fishing season April 5

The 2003 Illinois spring trout fishing season is scheduled to open at

5 a.m. on Saturday, April 5. More than 40 sites are participating this year.


Free Fishing Days Planning Materials available

   Planning a Free Fishing Days event this year? Dozens of organizations are expected to conduct fishing derbies and other special events as part of Illinois Free Fishing Days, June 6-9. The four-day celebration promotes sport fishing by providing anglers with the opportunity to fish without purchasing an annual fishing license, salmon stamp or inland trout stamp. Free Fishing Days is co-sponsored by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and Plano

Molding Co., the world’s largest manufacturer of fishing tackle boxes.

 

   Organizations interested in receiving promotional and educational materials to be used as part of a Free Fishing Days event, or for more information, should contact Gary Watson, IDNR Public Events and Promotions, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271, phone 217/782-9990.


Indiana

IN Bass regs changed

at Blue Grass Fish and Wildlife Are

   New largemouth bass regulations are in effect at Indiana DNR's Blue Grass Fish and Wildlife Area in Warrick County.  Regulations at the Blue Grass Pit and Loon Pit have been changed to an 18" minimum size limit and a two bass daily bag limit. Previously, there was a 14" minimum size limit and a five bass daily bag limit on the lakes.

Regulations remain the same on all other Blue Grass FWA lakes.

 

DNR fisheries biologist Dan Carnahan conducted surveys of Blue Grass lakes in 2000 and 2001.  He found that bass had an abundant forage base and that 1-, 2- and 3-year-old fish were growing well.  By setting more restrictive regulations, Carnahan thinks that the lakes can be developed into a quality bass fishing site near Evansville.


IN Turkey hunting & prep workshop – April 17

   Educator and wildlife biologist David Osborne will present a program on wild turkey calling, hunting, cleaning and preparation on April 17, from 6 to 9 PM at the SEPAC Farm located just west of Butlerville, Ind.

 

   Osborne will present wild turkey calling and hunting tips, and demonstrate techniques for dressing and cooking turkey.  Hands-on activities will teach participants recipes and methods for improving the quality and taste of wild turkey. Osborne's presentation features deep frying techniques.

   The workshop is sponsored by the Cooperative Extension Service and Indiana Department of Natural Resources.  For more information or to sign up, call (812) 689-6511.

 

Purchase turkey hunting licenses online at:  http://wildlife.IN.gov

 

2003 turkey hunting season forecast:  http://www.IN.gov/dnr/fishwild/hunt/turkey/turkeydata.htm

 

Turkey hunting regulations are available at: http://www.IN.gov/dnr/fishwild/huntguide1/turkey.htm


IN DNR works to thwart exotic invaders

First of 3 meetings scheduled April 15

   Indiana DNR scientists and Mishawaka-based consultants D.J. Case and Associates (DJCA) are looking for Hoosiers to lead a fight against exotic invaders.

 

   Nuisance aquatic plant and animal invaders such as zebra mussels, bighead carp, purple loosestrife, white perch and sea lamprey cost Hoosiers millions of dollars each year in control measures and lost natural resource value. Lake residents in northern Indiana, for instance, spend an estimated $800,000 per year to remove Eurasian watermilfoil, an invasive aquatic plant.  And new invasions of nuisance aquatic species could decimate fisheries and cost the nation billions to control.

   Universities, industries, non-governmental organizations, and citizens interested in aquatic nuisance species control are urged to contribute ideas toward development of a statewide long-term "Aquatic Nuisance Species Management Plan."  Once finalized, the plan will be used as a road map for guiding nuisance control efforts and enable Indiana to apply for federal funding of around $100,000 per year to support nuisance aquatic species control projects.

 

   The first of three plan development meetings will take place Tuesday, April 15 at The Garrison at Ft. Harrison State Park in Indianapolis, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Info contact:  Phil Seng 574-258-0100.


Michigan

MI DNR considers Pine, Upper Manistee for "Natural Rivers" designation

DNR schedules meetings to give/get input on proposals

   The Michigan DNR announced a series of public hearings to discuss designation of the Pine River and Upper Manistee River as Natural Rivers under authority of Natural Rivers Act.

 

   The hearings allow public testimony regarding the draft Natural River Management Plans written for both rivers. Each hearing will open with a one-hour information session where Natural Rivers Program staff will be available to answer questions. 

 

   Interested residents can provide verbal comments on either plan at any hearing location. Written comments may be submitted to Steve Sutton, DNR, Fisheries Division, PO Box 30446, Lansing, MI 48909, or by e-mail to SUTTONSL@michigan.gov 

 

   The public comment period will remain open until June 8. Following the public comment period, both draft Management Plans and the public comment record will be submitted to the DNR Director for review and a final

decision. Copies of the draft Management Plans can be found on the internet at www.Michigan.gov/dnr, or by requesting a copy at the address given above or in person from the County Clerk's office in those counties scheduled for public hearing. Hearing dates are listed below.

 

1. April 28, 6-9 p.m., Manistee High School Auditorium, Manistee

2. April 29, 1-4 p.m., Hollister Senior Center, Baldwin

3. April 29, 6-9 p.m.,        Reed City High School, Reed City

4. April 30, 6-9 p.m., Lake City High School Auditorium, Lake City

5. May 1, 6-9 p.m., Kalkaska High School Auditorium, Kalkaska

6. May 2, 6-9 p.m., Senior High School Cafeteria, Cadillac

7. May 3, 1-4 p.m., Grayling Middle School Cafeteria, Grayling ,

8. May 5, 1-4 p.m., Bellaire Senior Center, Bellaire

9. May 5, 6-9, p.m., Gaylord Intermediate School, Gaylord

10. May 6, 6-9 p.m., Southfield High School Library, Southfield

11. May 7, 6-9 p.m., Central High School Auditorium, Grand Rapids

12. May 8, 6-9 p.m., Okemos High School Kiva, Lansing


Hartwick Pines hosts fly-tying class – April 12

   The Michigan Forest Visitor Center at Hartwick Pines State Park is holding a fly tying workshop on Saturday, April 12, from 1 to 3: 30 p.m.

 

   Participants will learn to tie six popular patterns, including the famous Adams, Hare's Ear Nymph and Marabou Muddler. The cost of the workshop is $40 and includes equipment and materials to tie more than 25 flies.

A special vice used in fly tying will be provided with the option to purchase at the end of the workshop. There also will be a demonstration of fly casting and fishing techniques.

 

   The park is located off I-75, exit 259, about three miles north of Grayling, and the workshop will be held in the visitor center. A $10 reservation fee is required to secure a spot with the $30 balance due upon arrival. To register, contact Chris Kline at 989-344-1343.


MI B.O.W. weekend set for the Upper Peninsula – June 6-8

   Michigan DNR officials announced open registration for the 6th annual Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (B.O.W.) Program, set for June 6-8, 2003, in Big Bay, Michigan.

 

   The program will be held again this year at Bay Cliff Health Camp, a handicapped accessible facility located in an isolated, wooded setting, 30 miles north of Marquette on the shores of Lake Superior.   

 

   Sponsored by the DNR, the B.O.W. program includes instruction in over two dozen kinds of outdoor activities related to learning new skills or enhancing existing ones. Classes are offered in kayaking, canoeing, various types of fishing, hiking, mountain biking, fly tying, archery, birding, GPS, map and compass and several styles of shooting sports. Instructors provide basic and advanced instruction tailored to the participants' individual abilities. Participants are housed in dorm-style facilities with amenities including a pool, sauna, camping area, trails, tennis courts, and accessibility to Lake Superior.

 

   Becoming an Outdoors-Woman is an award winning

 program, designed to offer instruction to women on outdoor skills in a relaxed atmosphere. Nationally, over 10,000 women take part in a B.O.W. program each year, with programs offered in most states and Canada. Women 18 and older are eligible to participate. The U.P. B.O.W. Program accepts the first 125 women to register, and will also include numerous extra activities, such as individual kayaking instruction in the pool after hours, group bonfires, special programs and much more.

 

   The $140 program registration includes all programs, meals, snacks, lodging, and equipment, including firearms, ammunition and supplies. Those taking the mountain biking course are asked to bring their own bike and helmet.

 

   Early registration is highly recommended. Info: Ann Wilson or Sharon Pitz at the DNR office in Marquette, 906-228-6561, or e-mail wilsoann@michigan.gov  or pitzs@michigan.gov . All registration materials and class information is available on the DNR website, at http://michigan.gov/dnr

 


MI DNR seeking rattlesnake reports

   The  Michigan DNR is asking residents to report all eastern Massasauga rattlesnake observations in Michigan as part of a multi-state effort in cooperation with the USFWS. "Last year's reports provided some great information and helped us confirm Massasaugas at several sites," reported Lori Sargent, project coordinator. 

 

   The adult Massasaugas rattlesnake is thick-bodied and can be 18" to 30" in length. They are brown to grayish color with large brown blotches on their back and smaller lighter brown patches on their sides. This snake population has been declining due to habitat loss and human harassment.

 

   "Michigan appears to be the remaining stronghold for this snake's population," said Raymond Rustem, DNR Natural Heritage Unit Supervisor. "When you look at any other state, there are only one-to-six localized populations. Michigan has Massasaugas populations ranging from Oakland County through southwest Michigan and populations scattered throughout northern Michigan."

 

   The DNR is interested in any Massasaugas sightings

that you see from now and throughout the summer. A report form is available on the DNR web site, www.michigan.gov/dnr , under "wildlife observations." To assist with verification, the observer should include a color photograph or slide of the observed snake. Do not pick the snake up or kill it. The report site does provide a color photograph of an adult Massasaugas along with photographs of a milk snake and a hog-nosed snake, which are often mistaken for a Massasaugas.

 

   The Massasaugas rattlesnake is listed as a candidate species under the Federal Endangered Species Act. As part of the candidate status, the USFWS has initiated a survey to locate existing populations and establish the current range and status of Massasaugas. 

               

   The Massasaugas survey is being supported through Non-game Fish and Wildlife Funds and Federal State Wildlife Grants funding.  You can support the non-game efforts by looking for the loon at your Secretary of State's office and purchasing a Wildlife Habitat License plate for your vehicle.

 


Minnesota

MN Lead Tackle Education Bill Added to Omnibus Game and Fish Bill

   The Minnesota Senate Environment and Natural Resources Subcommittee on Game and Fish voted on March 28 to include a bill aimed at increasing education and awareness of alternatives to lead tackle in the Senate Omnibus Game and Fish Bill. 

 

   Sen. Yvonne Prettner Solon authored the lead tackle legislation after holding a series of meetings with representatives of the angler associations, tackle manufacturers, environmental and conservation organizations, and members of the Legislature. 

 

   During the hearing, Solon expressed her concerns about the toxic effects of lead in the environment, including those caused by lead fishing tackle.  However, she also made it clear that she was sensitive to concerns raised by tackle manufacturers and anglers regarding her original legislation which called for a ban of lead fishing sinkers weighing one ounce or less. 

 

   The legislation that passed does not include a ban of lead fishing tackle.  Rather it focuses on increasing education and awareness about lead tackle and the

nonlead alternatives.  In particular, it would allow the DNR to work with other jurisdictions, including federal, state, and international governments, to promote uniform laws and educational programs regarding lead fishing tackle.

 

   It would also require DNR and the Office of Environmental Assistance to provide public education regarding concerns about lead fishing tackle and the availability of nonlead fishing tackle.  These state agencies would also be allowed to provide grants to conservation organizations and angler associations for educational activities aimed at reducing the use of lead fishing tackle. 

 

   The legislation would further permit conservation officers to provide information regarding lead tackle and samples of lead-free jigs and sinkers to anglers.  In addition, the Department of Health and the Pollution Control Agency would be authorized to provide a report to the Legislature regarding the health hazards associated with the home manufacture of lead fishing tackle.

 

   The Senate Omnibus Game and Fish Bill will now go before the full Senate Environment and Natural Resources Committee for consideration.


MN B.O.W. Fishing opportunities offered - 4/12, 5/3, 6/7 & 6/14

   With the spring fishing season almost upon us, the Minnesota Becoming An Outdoors Woman is offering both fly-fishing and traditional angling events to help women get started. Here are some dates, locations and programs to consider:

 

►The first fly-fishing event will be a fly-fishing instruction clinic in the Twin Cities metro area, to be held at the Anoka side of the Coon Rapids Dam on April 12. This clinic, which will run from 1-4 p.m., will be hosted in cooperation with Wading Women and Anoka County Parks. The cost is $10. Registration is through the Minnesota DNR Info Center at 651-296-6157 or toll free 888-MINNDNR (646-6367).

 

►Those who wish to take their fly-fishing skills to the stream and see if they can nab a trout can participate in a day of fishing at Lanesboro May 3. That event will be held at Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center. Some of Minnesota's finest trout waters are in southeastern Minnesota. Registration for this event is through Eagle Bluff at (507) 467-2437. The cost is $50, with an additional $10 fee for those who wish to stay overnight Friday night.

Participants must have a trout stamp and a current Minnesota fishing license.

 

►BOW is also offering a guided launch angling trip on Mille Lacs Lake. The trip is limited to the first 15 registrants. All fishing equipment is furnished. The cost for the six-hour fishing trip is $50. This trip will be held June 14 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. out of McQuiod's Inn near Isle. Participants in this trip must have a current Minnesota fishing license.

 

►A parent /child fishing clinic will help parents introduce their children to fishing. The June 7 clinic at the North Mississippi Regional Park in Camden will provide separate activities for children and parents, and time to fish together. Cost for the three-hour clinic is $7 per family, with a maximum of two children per adult. Those interested can register by calling the DNR Information Center at (651) 296-6157 or 1-888-MINNDNR (646-6367).     

               

   "Fishing can provide a lifetime of excitement and enjoyment," said Jean Bergerson, Minnesota BOW Program coordinator. "These events provide an opportunity to learn fishing skills and the rewards of the sport."

 


MN Sea Grant offers Endocrine Disrupter Talk April 9

Coffee Beans, Laundry Soap, and Fish Sexuality: What Comes Around, Goes Around

   The public is invited to the next free talk in the "Superior Science for You!" speaker series, hosted by the U of Minnesota Sea Grant Program.

 

   On April 9 at 7 p.m. in Duluth at the EPA Gitchee Gumee Conference Facility, 6201 Congdon Blvd., Deborah Swackhamer, professor with the U of Minnesota Twin Cities School of Public Health, will present, "Coffee Beans, Laundry Soap, and Fish Sexuality: What Comes Around, Goes Around."

 

   The things we eat, drink, and wash with can mess up a fish's sex life. As they work through our lives and down our

drains, some common chemical compounds can scramble

the hormonal signals that rule fish development and reproduction.  Dr. Swackhamer, will discuss her research on these chemicals and their impact on fish in the Duluth-Superior Harbor.

 

   A reception will follow the talk. If you can't attend the talk in person, try listening through your computer.  Live audio will be broadcast from: www.seagrant.umn.edu/speakerseries/index.html

               

   Computer listeners can view the speaker's slides and even e-mail the speaker questions and she will answer them at the end of the talk.  A video of the presentation will be posted to this site the next day. Video archives of previous talks and more information about the series can also be accessed through the speaker series Web page.


New York

NY Bill Targets Eco-Terrorists

   Assemblyman Richard Smith (D-Blasdell) has introduced New York Assembly Bill 4884 to recognize violent acts by animal-rights activists and other eco-terrorists as forms of domestic terrorism.  Bill 4884 could serve as an effective model for other states, as it also increases penalties for persons participating in these acts and creates penalties for those who assist or finance these acts of terrorism.

 

   The FBI found militant animal-rights groups, like the Earth Liberation Front and the Animal Liberation Front, to be among the largest and fastest-growing domestic terror

threats.  According to the New York Post, ELF and ALF caused $17.3 million in damages during 2001 alone.

 

For more details about Bill 4884 http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?bn=A04884

 

   Sportsmen are encouraged to contact their elected officials to introduce similar legislation in other states, and vital for New Yorkers to contact members of the New York Assembly at http://assembly.state.ny.us/mem/ to express support.


New York State Trout Fishing Season Opens April 1

   New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Erin M. Crotty today encouraged anglers to make the proper preparations for the start of trout season on Tuesday, April 1, 2003.

 

   "New York has a wide variety of trout waters that offer anglers wonderful opportunities for successful fishing on opening day," Commissioner Crotty said. "However, due to the large winter snowfalls experienced over much of the state, this year's opener may find many streams with high water levels. As such, anglers may want to try some of the smaller streams and tributaries. I expect another successful fishing season as New York continues its legacy as a popular and unique venue for outdoor recreation."

 

   Most Adirondack ponds are likely to remain frozen for the April 1st opener. Ice fishing is prohibited in trout waters except as noted in the Fishing Regulations Guide. Anglers should scout out areas beforehand where the possibility of frozen waters may exist.

 

   DEC suggests that early season anglers can improve their success by fishing deep and slow, and by using natural baits such as worms and minnows, where permitted. Pond fishing is often best immediately after the winter ice melts. Prime areas to fish are those that warm the earliest, including tributary mouths and near surface and shallow shoreline areas.

 

   DEC plans to stock approximately 2.35 million catchable-size brook, brown and rainbow trout in more than 650 lakes, ponds and streams across the state. The 2003 spring mix will include approximately 1.8 million brown trout, 440,000 rainbow trout and 115,000 brook trout.DEC will again include 2-year-old brown trout in the spring stocking program. These fish average 12-13 inches in length, with some as large as 15 inches. Approximately 97,000 of these larger fish will be placed in 187 lakes and

streams statewide, providing additional opportunities for anglers to catch larger fish early in the season.

 

   In addition, DEC will also stock New York waters with more than 2 million yearling lake trout, steelhead, landlocked salmon, splake and coho salmon this spring to provide exciting fishing opportunities over the next several years. With fingerling and smaller fish included, DEC plans to stock more than 7.7 million trout and salmon in state waters this year. This includes more than 350,000 brook trout fingerlings going to over 330 lakes and ponds. For a complete listing of stocked waters: t www.dec.state.ny.us/website/index.html

 

   In addition to stocked waters, New York State has thousands of miles of wild trout streams that provide excellent fishing opportunities. Regional Fisheries offices, which are listed in the Fishing Regulations Guide, can offer specific details about these streams. DEC also remains committed to increasing public access to New York's coldwater streams. Since 1935, DEC has worked with private landowners to secure more than 1,200 miles of public fishing rights to prime trout waters. The streams are marked with public fishing rights signs, and anglers may also contact local Regional Fisheries offices for a list of these sites and directions to the accessible sections. Any landowners who want to work with DEC to provide access to trout streams should contact their local DEC office.Anglers are reminded that the general creel limit for brook, brown and rainbow trout is five.

 

   The open season for trout in most New York waters runs from April 1 through October 15, but there are exceptions in all DEC regions, so anglers should check the Fishing Regulations Guide prior to heading out on the water. Anglers are also reminded again that there are new procedures for fishing New York City reservoirs. Updated info and permit applications can be obtained at nyc.gov/html/dep/html/watershed.html or call 800-575-LAND.


Ohio

Ohio Smallmouth Alliance - Miami Valley Chapter First meeting set for April 10

   The Ohio Smallmouth Alliance (TOSA) newest chapter, the Miami Valley Ohio Smallmouth Alliance, will have its

very first meeting at the Kenwood Fellowship Hall on Thursday, April 10, 2003. The meeting will begin at 7 PM.

 

   At this premiere gathering the chapter will elect officers and begin the process of creating a dynamic, exciting and effective coalition of conservation-minded anglers. We will review and discuss the rivers and streams composing the Miami Valley Watershed in order to collectively create a plan to make our native fishery ever stronger. Join us and be a part of the most exciting thing to happen in southwest Ohio smallmouth bass fishing since the invention of the hula-popper!

   The Kenwood Fellowship Hall is located on Kenwood Rd near I71. Cross I71and you will find the Fellowship Hall across from Euclid, on your right if you are traveling from the Kenwood Towne Center mall.

 

For more information call Joe Cornwall at 513-891-1003.

 

About The Ohio Smallmouth Alliance

   Founded in 1993, The Ohio Smallmouth Alliance (TOSA) is a statewide organization of active anglers who are "Dedicated to improving smallmouth bass fishing in Ohio’s watersheds through education, habitat preservation, and responsible management".  For more information:  http://www.smallmouth.org/Ohio.html

 


Wisconsin

WI Fisheries highlights

Lake Superior lake trout are doing well.

   State and tribal biologists determined that the continued recovery of lake trout in Lake superior warranted an increase in harvest, including a 24% increase for each state-licensed commercial.

 

Yellow perch hopes have dimmed, for now.

Early indications were encouraging, but hopes have dimmed for exceptional reproduction in 2002 by yellow perch in either Green Bay or Lake Michigan. Our best guess now is the 2002 year class will be comparable to that of 1998, at best, and far below the best years of the 1980s. In both Green Bay and Lake Michigan, sport catches consist predominantly of four-year-old fish, hatched in 1998.

 

Chinook salmon – should we stock more or less?

2002 was the best year since the mid 1980s for chinook salmon fishing in Lake Michigan. The harvest was fueled mainly by fish stocked in 1999. You will recall that was the year the Great Lakes Sport Fishing Council hosted the lake wide stocking conference at the request of the Lake Michigan Management Agencies (LMMA).  In consultation

with input from the angling community, the four states agreed to reduce stocking by 27% lakewide, and the LMMA  have maintained the reduced stocking levels since then.

 

   Wisconsin fisheries biologists don’t take the great fishing for granted. No fishery in the world is predictable, and this one is no exception. Department biologists will continue to work with their Lake Michigan counterparts to monitor trends in forage abundance and Chinook salmon condition, and to understand forage requirements of the lakewide stocking program.

 

   Last year they collaborated with other LMMA biologists and with the USGS’ Great Lakes Science Center (GLSC) in Ann Arbor to implement a hydroacoustic-based estimate of forage abundance to complement the trawl-based survey conducted annually by the GLSC. Meanwhile, overstocking scientists at Michigan State University are tuning up mathematical models to try and quantify the risks of overstocking salmon and trout. We also watch trends in size and condition of salmon that are recovered at our spawning weirs and by anglers.


WI Sturgeon spearers take 902 fish

Best Wisconsin harvest since 1987

   Lake Winnebago’s sturgeon spearing season ended Feb. 17 with a hat trick that should have left everybody smiling:

 

►Spearers got to spear a full 10 days, including two weekends, instead of the two-day seasons of some recent years.

►Spearers registered 902 fish, including 11 that exceeded 100 lbs. That’s the highest percentage of these large fish in the harvest since 1982; the total harvest itself betters last year’s take of 847.

►Harvest of adult females stayed below the harvest cap of 400, preventing a repeat of the 2000 season, when the harvest exceeded the harvest cap by 52 % and biologists became concerned about the impact on the population.

 

   The 2003 harvest season closed after spearing hours

Feb.17 because spearers on the previous day had passed one of three trigger levels for shutting down the season. The season shuts down at the end of the next day after spearers have exceeded separate harvest caps for adult females, juvenile females, or males.

 

   On Feb. 16, spearers passed the harvest cap trigger of 320 adult females; spearers on that day pushed the number to 334 adult females and added 16 more on the final day for a season total of 350 adult females.

 

   During the 10-day season, spearers harvested 157 female juvenile fish, well under the trigger of 320 and the harvest cap of 400, and took 395 males, well under the trigger of 1,040 and the harvest cap of 1,300.  Michael Blanck of Malone registered the largest sturgeon of the 2003 season, a 139 pound, 76.5 inch female.

 


Ontario

Lake St. Clair Angler fined $4,200

   CHATHAM — A Chatham angler has been fined a total of $4200 for fishing violations on Lake St. Clair.

Van Bon Le, 40, of Chatham, pleaded guilty and was fined $2700 for an over-limit of walleye and $1500 for bass fishing out-of-season.

 

   On June 27, 2002, two Ministry of Natural Resources Conservation Officers from the Chatham office of the Aylmer District met three men as they loaded their boat on a trailer at St. Luke’s on Lake St. Clair. The officers found 36 walleye in the boat, which represented 18 walleye over

the men's combined daily limit.  The search of the boat also found three smallmouth bass and six largemouth bass.  Fishing for bass in southern Ontario is closed until the last Saturday in June, which in this case was June 29.

 

   Justice B.G. Thomas heard the case in the Ontario Court of Justice in Chatham on February 4, 2002. The penalty was set by the court on February 17, 2003.

               

   Report violations to the local MNR office or to Crime Stoppers:  800-222-TIPS (8477).


New Nz Nuggets - News, shorts, Briefs, Tidbits, Bites, (Whatever)

Try this

   Next time you have unused minnows, don’t throw them out. Put them in a Ziploc bag, cover them with water and .

add food coloring ― yellow, red or blue.  Freeze the bag and use the tinted minnows on days when bites are hard to come by. A little color can get fish active


Food for thought

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed

citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."   Margaret Mead


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