Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Trout in the 'The New York Times'

I found this opinion piece quite thought provoking. On reflection the one thought it does provoke is am not entirely sure if this chap ever really enjoyed fishing!

I would certainly echo his sentiments regarding the processing of marine fish to create pellets to feed to fish to be stocked into freshwater. In plain terms it is simply unsustainable and for me it is the primary, although certainly not the only, reason why I simply do not like the notion of stocking trout.
I certainly agree with the comments regarding protecting native fish and I still struggle to understand why it remains acceptable to stock running water in the UK with non native rainbow trout. 

The logic regarding stocking fish and catch and release is pretty hazy at best. Although I accept that the risk of fish, either stocked or native, mortality must be increased by catching and subsequent release I have never seen any data that would confirm that ‘survival rates of hatchery fish in the wild are very low, especially after hooking damage and exhaustion associated with repeated catch-and-release encounters.’ Interestingly the author fails to provide any evidence to support this statement. My personal feeling is that many fish stocked into rivers are never caught simply because they soon get swept off downstream - imagine what benefit could be wrought if all the money ‘invested’ every year into the purchase of fish for stocking was ploughed instead into activities that are both durable and tangible. 

In my own personal Utopia there would be no stocking and the habitat would support a healthy population of fish that can be fished for. Although I am typically a catch and release angler in such a scenario I see no issue whatsoever with any angler taking the occasional fish for the table.

No comments: