Week of Julu 26, 2010

Fishing beyond the Great Lakes
Hunting & Shooting Products/Issues
Regional

2nd Amendment Issues
General

Michigan
New York
Ohio
Other Breaking News Items

 

       Weekly News Archives

                         or

       New Product  Archives

Fishing beyond the Great Lakes

Louisiana reopens most State Waters to Recreational Fishing

Exceptional angling opportunities abound in much of the Gulf of Mexico

Alexandria, VA - July 15, 2010 - In a move lauded by the sportfishing industry, on July 14, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission announced that 86 percent of state marine waters are now open to recreational fishing. Louisiana's state coastal waters had been closed because of the BP oil spill. The small percentage of waters that are still closed can be viewed at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/news/?id=1907.

 

"The decision by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission to reopen most of the state's waters to recreational fishing demonstrates that there is an abundance of fishing opportunity still available in the Gulf of Mexico," said American Sportfishing Association Vice President Gordon Robertson. "While the oil spill has had a direct effect on some areas, tremendous recreational fishing is available in nearly all waters in Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and Texas, and in the majority of federal waters offshore."

 

On June 24, the Alabama Department of Conservation announced that catch and release fishing is allowed in state 

marine waters. Nearly all of Florida's Gulf waters are open to fishing, and Texas waters have not been impacted. While fishing is closed in the Mississippi Sound off of Mississippi, ample fishing opportunities are available in many of the state's bays and other inland waters. Approximately two-thirds of the federal waters beyond three miles offshore remain open to fishing.

 

"As someone who has heard about and seen first-hand the abundance of quality catches being landed by anglers, I encourage everyone to come check out the excellent fishing that's available," noted Dave Cresson, Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana's Executive Director and CEO. "The commission's action will encourage anglers and their families to head to the coast and should give a real boost to the bait and tackle shops and other recreational fishing dependent businesses in Louisiana and the entire Gulf.

 

"Our message to anyone who enjoys fishing in the Gulf region is simple: go fishing," concluded Robertson.

 

As of today, BP says oil has stopped leaking into the Gulf for the first time since April. BP has been slowly dialing down the flow as part of a test on a new cap. Engineers are now monitoring the pressure to see if the broken well holds.


Hunting & Shooting Products/Issues

Browning offers new Backcountry Camp Knife & Camp Saws

Morgan, UT-Browning has introduced its new Backcountry Camp Knife and line of new Camp Saws.  These new products give the serious outdoorsman the tools they need handle all kinds of chores in camp from chopping or sawing limbs for a fire, clearing brush to making space for a tent.

 

Backcountry Camp Knife

Backcountry Camp Knife Browning's new Backcountry Camp Knife is a handy addition to any outdoorsman's pack.  This fixed blade knife is constructed of Sandvik 12C27 stainless steel in 6 ½" length.  The handle is made of attractive brown linen Micarta for a durable, attractive appearance.  A top-grain leather sheath is supplied with outside pocket that holds a sharpening stone. 

 

About $109.95

 

www.browning.com 

 

New Folding Camp Saws

Browning's new Camp Saws are designed by knife designer Russ Kommer and are unmatched in comfort in handling and features.  The handle on the Browning Camp Saws is grooved and has a large tail radius to ensure a rock solid grip and comfort in hand.  Handles are injection molded composite with rubber inlay.  The high-carbon stainless steel push/pull blade maximizes cutting efficiency on both wood and when

dressing game.  Blades are made of 4116 stainless steel in 5 ¾" lengths.  A unique sheath is supplied that can be worn in both horizontal and vertical positions.

 

The new Browning Camp Saw will be offered in combos that will include a folding knife with secure liner lock and thumbstud.   Available with Black handles, New Camp Saw only

 

About $19.95

 

www.browning.com 

 

Camp Saw and Knife combo in Black

 

About $29.95

 

Camp Saw and Knife combo in Mossy Oak New Break-Up

 

About $39.95

 

www.browning.com 


Trijicon, Inc. Supports USA Shooting with Gold-Level Sponsorship

Wixom, MI - Trijicon, Inc. has announced its Gold-Level partnership with USA Shooting. As a Gold-Level partner of USA Shooting, Trijicon will provide various models of its innovative AccuPoint riflescopes and compact RMR series sights for use by athletes and youth-based groups hosted by the USA Shooting - Olympic Shooting Center.

 

"Trijicon is delighted to partner with USA Shooting," said Tom Munson, Trijicon Director of Sales and Marketing. "USA Shooting plays a crucial role in the governing, promotion and preservation of our nation's Olympic shooting sports. We are proud to offer our support to this vital organization."

 

USA Shooting is headquartered at the Olympic Training Center (OTC) in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Located on the OTC campus, the Olympic Shooting Center is used for elite and resident athlete training, competitions, national championships, coaching seminars, camps, committee meetings and local clubs. The Shooting Center is the largest indoor shooting facility in the Western Hemisphere and the

third  largest in the world. For more information related to USA Shooting and the Olympic Training Center, please visit www.usashooting.org .

 

A 501c3 non-profit corporation, USA Shooting was chartered by the United States Olympic Committee as the National Governing Body for the  sport of shooting. The organization implements and manages development programs and sanctions events at the local, state, regional, and  national levels.

 

About Trijicon, Inc.

Trijicon, Inc. has led the industry in the development of superior any-light aiming systems since the company's founding in 1981. Incorporating  more than two decades of innovation, Trijicon riflescopes and sights are the most advanced aiming systems available today. For more  information on the company's proven self-luminous aiming systems for tactical and sporting applications, contact Trijicon, Inc. at 49385 Shafer  Ave., Wixom, MI 48393 • 800-338-0563 • www.trijicon.com.


 

Regional

Regional group heads state initiative to find solution to Asian Carp

Governors and Mayors asked to head up initiative

The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative (GLGLCI) have been asked to head up study in finding a solution to the Asian Carp problem.  The GLGLCI, under the direction of David A. Ullrich, Executive Director, will be heading up an initiative with the Great Lakes Commission called “Envisioning a Chicago Waterway System for the 21st Century” that will not only deal with the Asian carp and other invasive species problems, but improve the economic, environmental, and social value of the system for the benefit of the entire Great Lakes and St. Lawrence basin.

Mayor Daley and Mayor Heartwell will serve on an executive committee to oversee the project, along with Governor Quinn of Illinois and Governor Strickland of Ohio.  The group will be working with Tim Eder, Executive Director of the Great Lakes Commission on a day to day basis to keep the initiative on track.  There will be extensive stakeholder involvement in this effort.

 

Initial funding for this effort is coming from the Joyce Foundation ($500,000) and the Great Lakes Protection Fund ($193,000).  Several other foundations have already expressed interest, and we expect to have the full $2 million for the work by the end of the year.   www.glslcities.org


Midwest Fish Habitat benefits to Protect against effects of Climate Change

More than $1 million available from National Habitat plan and contributions

Midwest Regional Director Tom Melius announced last week the USFWS will provide over $548,000 to support 13 fish habitat projects in eight Midwestern states under the National Fish Habitat Action Plan (NFHAP).

 

An additional $641,000 in partner contributions will go toward restoring and enhancing stream, lake and coastal habitat, improving recreational fishing and helping endangered species, and supporting long-term protection against the effects of climate change.  More than $13.2 million in total federal and partner contributions will be distributed under NFHAP for fish habitat projects across the United States.

 

The funding is provided for priority projects identified through Fish Habitat Partnerships established under the NFHAP. Eight of those partnerships directly influence states in the Midwest and direct funding and other resources to habitat improvement projects offering the highest long-term conservation returns.

 

Aquatic ecosystems are especially vulnerable to changes in climate. Healthy habitats help fish and other aquatic life withstand flows and temperatures that are altered due to climate change. The projects will improve stream flow, remove barriers or acquire scientific information needed for long-term protection against the effects of climate change.

 

“Climate change, fragmentation, invasive species and habitat destruction harm fish habitat in the Midwest,” said Melius. “It is our responsibility to work with our partners to heal the damage and protect our valuable fishery resources against future harm.”

 

More than 40 percent of U.S. fish populations are currently considered declining, half of the waters in the U.S. are somehow impaired, and fragmented conservation efforts are not reversing these declines. In addition to helping stem these declines, NFHAP projects also enhance fishing opportunities for the public by putting more dollars on the ground for fish conservation.

 

NFHAP partnerships to receive funding for Midwest projects include:

 ►Driftless Area Restoration Effort - Federal funds: $300,000; Partner contribution $368,873

 

•               Richmond Springs Fish Passage Improvement Project to remove four fish passage barriers and reopen 16 miles to fish passage (IA)

•               Williams-Barneveld Creek Stream Corridor Improvement to enhance instream and riparian habitat and restore 4 wetland acres (WI)

•               Brush Creek Habitat Restoration and Stream Bank Stabilization to restore instream, wetland acres and enhance riparian habitat (IA)

•               Maquoketa River Iowa Fish Habitat Improvement Project to enhance 4.4 instream miles and 0.6 miles of riparian habitat (IA)

•               Kittleson Valley Creek-Pleasant Valley Habitat Improvement to restore or enhance 4 miles of instream and riparian habitat (WI)

•               Wisconsin Stream Fragmentation Assessment to quantify the spatial extent of stream fragmentation caused by road crossings (WI)

►Great Lakes Basin Fish Habitat Partnership (GLBFHP) – Federal funds: $90,000; Partner contribution: $89,250

•               Elias Cove Restoration/Native Coastal Wetland Planting Project to restore 0.2 instream/shoreline miles (MI)

•               Butternut Creek Stream Restoration and Dam Removal to reopen 13 miles to fish passage and restore instream/shoreline miles (MI)

►Midwest Glacial Lakes Partnership (MGLP) Federal funds: $89,946; Partner contribution $70,150

•               Strategic Fish Habitat/GIS Modeling Project to conduct six fish habitat assessments (IA, IL, IN, MI, MN, WI)

•               Lakescaping Demonstration Projects in Eastern South Dakota (SD)

►Ohio River Basin Fish Habitat Partnership (ORBFHP) Federal funds: $90,000; Partner contribution: $119,900

•               Using High Temporal Satellite Imagery to Detect Submerged Aquatic Invasives Project to survey aquatic invasives species to support management and control and advancement of early detection techniques (IL, IN, OH, KY)

•               North Manchester Dam and Liberty Mills Dam Removal Projects to reopen 190 miles to fish passage and assess habitat (IN)

•               West Milton Dam Removal Feasibility Study (OH)

 

For a complete listing of funded projects:  www.fws.gov/fisheries/fwco/nfhap

 

For more information about the National Fish Habitat Action Plan, its partnerships and programs: www.fishhabitat.org


Weekly Great Lakes Water Levels for July 23, 2010

Weather Conditions

Most of the Great Lakes basin experienced partly cloudy weather through much of the week with temperatures slightly above seasonal averages.  A low pressure storm system began moving through the basin from the west on Thursday bringing showers and thunderstorms which will continue into the weekend.  As the low pressure system moves through the area, temperatures may drop briefly for Friday.  Mixed periods of precipitation will return next week with temperatures remaining near seasonal averages.  Most of the Great Lakes basin has received normal amounts of precipitation so far this month, with much higher than average amounts in a few locations.

 Lake Level Conditions

All of the Great Lakes continue to be below their levels of a year ago. The lakes are all currently 6 inches below last year's levels. Over the next month, the water level of Lake Superior is expected to rise 2 inches, while Lake Michigan-Huron is forecasted to remain near the same level over the next 30 days. The water level of Lake St. Clair is expected to decrease by 5 inches and Lakes Erie and Ontario are each expected to fall 4 inches over the next month.

Forecasted July Outflows/Channel Conditions

The outflows from Lake Superior into the St. Mary's River, Lake Huron into the St. Clair River, and Lake St. Clair into the Detroit

River are forecasted to be below average during the month. 

Near average outflow is expected from Lake Erie into the Niagara River.  The flow in the St. Lawrence River is forecasted to be below average throughout the month of July.

Alerts

Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels.  Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings.

 

 

Superior

Mich-Huron

St. Clair

Erie

Ontario

Level for July 23

601.05

578.31

574.41

571.69

245.93

Datum, in ft

601.1

577.5

572.3

569.2

243.3

Diff in inches

-1

+10

+25

+30

+32

Diff last month

+2

+2

0

-2

+3

Diff from last yr

-6

-6

-6

-6

-6


2nd Amendment Issues

NY - Heating Up the Gun Battles

The Second Amendment Foundation continues its assault on bad gun legislation with a federal lawsuit against Westchester County, New York and its handgun permit licensing officers. The suit seeks a permanent injunction against enforcement of a New York state law that allows carry licenses to be denied because applicants cannot show "good cause".

 

Westchester County residents Alan Kachalsky and Christina Kikolov are also parties to the lawsuit. Both had permits denied. Kachalsky's denial was because he could not "demonstrate a need for self protection distinguishable from that of the general public."  Kikolov's was denied because she could not demonstrate "any type of threat to her own safety anywhere."

 

If it's true that Kikolov had no demonstrable threat to her safety anywhere, I'd like to live in her neighborhood. Having lived in New York, however, I'm betting that's a little artistic license on the part of the handgun permit licensing officer. Another Westchester pair, Susan Cacace and Jefferey Cohen, both of whom served at times as handgun permit licensing officers, were also named as defendants.

 

According to the suit, New York Penal Code says handgun carry permit applicants must "demonstrate good cause for the issuance of a permit. The plaintiffs claim that "good cause" requirement violates the Second Amendment. "American citizens like Alan Kachalsky and Christina Nikolov should not

have to demonstrate good cause in order to exercise a

constitutionally-protected civil right," says SAF Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb.

 

"Our civil rights, including the right to keep and bear arms, should not be subject to the whims of a local government or its employees, just because they don't think someone needs' a carry permit. Nobody advocates arming criminals or mental defectives, but honest citizens with clean records should not be denied out of hand.

 

"Thanks to our recent victory before the Supreme Court," Gottlieb stated, "the Second Amendment now applies to state and local governments. Our lawsuit is a reminder to state and local bureaucrats that we have a Bill of Rights in this country, not a Bill of Needs'."

 

As usual, Gottlieb's coming into U.S. District Court (the Southern Division of New York White Plains Division) with his big legal gun blazing. Attorney Alan Gura, 2-0 in Second Amendment cases before the U.S. Supreme Court is representing the plaintiffs, along with Vincent Gelardi of Rye Brook, New York.

 

This case seems to be another of the series of domino-effect cases that will be required to force recognition of the United States Supreme Court having found - twice- that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms applies to all citizens on an equal basis.


General

Tackle Industry looks to unite 60 Million Anglers

Industry announces KeepAmericaFishing to address access and conservation issues
LAS VEGAS--The American Sportfishing Association (ASA) used the opening day of the industry's fifty-third International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades (ICAST) to launched a renewed effort to unite the sportfishing industry and the country's 60 million anglers with one united voice to keep our nation's public waters open, clean and abundant with fish.

Across the country, preventing or limiting recreational anglers from accessing public fisheries resources is being touted as a new way to manage fish populations, undermining the achievements of proven fisheries management methods that focus on conservation and promote sustainable fishing. As a result, the past 10 years have seen a dramatic increase in bans or efforts to ban recreational fishing from the Atlantic to the Pacific and from the Gulf of Mexico to the Great Lakes.

"If this alarming trend continues, anglers nationwide may risk similar restrictions being implemented on their favorite lakes, rivers and streams," ASA President and CEO Mike Nussman told over 400 sportfishing business leaders during the annual State of the Industry breakfast. "The voice of 60 million conservationist anglers who promote conservation over preservation must be heard by legislators, regulators and environmentalists."

Recent closures and restrictions are keeping anglers off the water which could have a significant financial impact on the sportfishing industry:

• In California, hundreds of miles of the state's saltwater have been designated as no-take marine reserves. This leaves over 760,000 salt water anglers without access to some of the best fishing spots on the Pacific Coast and puts $1.3 billion in retail sales at risk.

• Along the Atlantic Coast, a $60,000 loss in sales per store is projected for the 1,300 bait and tackle shops in that region if the proposed bottom-fishing ban in federal waters is adopted.

That equates to a possible $78 million loss in sales for that region alone in the first year.
 

• In North Carolina, 1.2 million saltwater anglers risk losing reasonable access to many of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area's best marine sportfishing areas.

 

In 2006, KeepAmericaFishing was created to keep California's and North Carolina's anglers informed and motivated to speak out on issues affecting sportfishing access in their states.

"Our industry soon realized that we needed to give voice to not just California's and
North Carolina's anglers, but to the millions of anglers, retailers and manufacturers who share one thing in common - a passion for fishing," said ASA Vice President Gordon Robertson. "The industry's whole-hearted response to our new advocacy and fundraising campaign will help elevate the challenges facing sportfishing in communities across the U.S."
 

Through policy, science and conservation, KeepAmericaFishing works to minimize access restrictions, promote clean waters and restore fish populations. With its conservation partners, KeepAmericaFishing works to limit science-based closures to areas in which they are clearly beneficial to the health of the fishery.

At
www.KeepAmericaFishing.org anglers, retailers, manufacturers and other recreational fishing-dependent businesses will find the latest news regarding fishery closures and KeepAmericaFishing efforts to keep them open, clean and abundant with fish.

Robertson concluded, "KeepAmericaFishing is mission critical to sportfishing in America. To learn more about restrictions to recreational fishing and what you can do to keep America fishing in your community, please visit
www.KeepAmericaFishing.org."

 


Tackle Industry Awards 2010 "Best of Show" Honors

G. Loomis, Lowrance-Navico, Pure Fishing, Sebile Innovative Fishing and Shimano American Corporation were repeat winners in the 2010 New Product Showcase. Loomis's NRX was voted by buyers and media as the most innovative product in the ICAST 2010 New Product Showcase in the freshwater rod category and overall Best of Show.

 

Five 2009 showcase winners - G.Loomis, Lowrance-Navico, Pure Fishing, Sebile Innovative Fishing and Shimano American Corporation - won awards again in 2010.

 

Making up a special section of ICAST's 400,000-square-foot show floor, the New Product Showcase provides special visibility for the industry's latest innovations in gear and accessories. Buyers and media representatives judged the products based on their level of innovation, execution, workmanship and practicality to select "Best of Show" honors in 17 categories, as well as the overall "Best of Show" winner.

 

2010 ICAST New Product Showcase Award Winners

For product details, images and other information please contact the individual award winner's media contact listed below.

 

Overall Best of Show - G.Loomis - NRX

Contact: John Mazurkiewicz, Catalyst Marketing - 574-289-1331; jpmazurk@ameritech.net 

 

Apparel - Frabill, Inc. - FXE Stormsuit

Contact: Noel Vick, Traditions Media: 612-708-7339; noel@traditionsmedia.com

 

Combo - Ardent/Lamiglas - C400/XC704 Fishouflage Bass

Contact: Michael Brooks - 800-325-9200, x201; mjbrooks@ardentoutdoors.com

 

Electronics - Lowrance-Navico - Lowrance Elite-5 DSI

Contact: Andrew Golden - 617-413-6521; agolden@rushtongregory.com

 

Eyewear - Maui Jim Sunglasses - Guy Harvey Collection

Contact: Cathi Volante - 888-628-4546, cell: 847-542-7332; cvolante@mauijim.com

 

Fishing Accessory - Adventure Products, Inc. - EGO S2 Slider Landing Net

Contact: Grant Corbett - 541-390-5159; grantc@adventureproducts.com

 

Giftware - Boating Expressions, Inc. - Fishfenders

Contact: Gene Rascow - 714-650-1606; fishfenders@gmail.com

 

Kids Tackle - Pure Fishing - Pflueger-Spinning Combo-Apprentice

Contact: Ron Giudice, Blue Heron Communications - 405-740-2740; ron@blueheroncomm.com 

 

Line - Rapala - Sufix 832 Advanced Superline

Contact: Kelly Brockpahler - 612-481-8375; kbrockpahler@rapalausa.com

 

Soft Lure - Koppers Fishing & Tackle Corporation - Live Target Hollow Body Frog

Contact - Tom Chopin - 905-327-9095; tom@koppersfishing.com

 

Hard Lure - Shimano American Corporation - Waxwing Sub-Surface Swimming Jig

Contact: John Mazurkiewicz, Catalyst Marketing - 574-289-1331; jpmazurk@ameritech.net 

 

Marine - Minn Kota-Johnson Outdoors, Inc. - Talon-Shallow Water Anchor

Contact: Steve Roth, Swanson Russell - 402-437-6418; steveroth@swansonrussell.com 

 

Freshwater Reel - Shimano American Corporation - Stella FE

Contact: John Mazurkiewicz, Catalyst Marketing - 574-289-1331; jpmazurk@ameritech.net  

 

Saltwater Reel - Shimano American Corporation - Trinidad A

Contact: John Mazurkiewicz, Catalyst Marketing - 574-289-1331; jpmazurk@ameritech.net 

 

Freshwater Rod - G.Loomis - NRX

Contact: John Mazurkiewicz, Catalyst Marketing - 574-289-1331; jpmazurk@ameritech.net 

 

Saltwater Rod - Shimano American Corporation - Terez

Contact: John Mazurkiewicz, Catalyst Marketing - 574-289-1331; jpmazurk@ameritech.net

 

Tackle Management - HYI, Inc. - Openwater Tackle Backpack

Contact: Adrian Dare - 714-604-8376; adriand@hyiusa.com

 

Terminal Tackle - Sebile Innovative Fishing - Soft Weight System

Contact: Russell Gray - 303-437-8103; rgray@sebile.com

 

In 2011, ICAST will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, from July 13-15, 2011. ICAST 2012 will be held at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, from July 11-13, 2012.

 


Field & Stream name the Best Wild Places

Six Public Lands to Visit Now

NEW YORK—Field & Stream, the world’s leading outdoor magazine named the “Best Wild Places” in the American West. The six locations, which are all located on public lands, are considered the finest intact public wildlife habitat remaining in the Western United States.

 

“American’s have a unique opportunity to visit some of the nation’s best wild places because they’re located on public lands,” says Anthony Licata, editor of Field & Stream. “As avid outdoorsmen, Field & Stream readers understand the link between intact habitat and healthy wildlife, but if we don’t guard wild landscapes against use that will degrade them, they’ll be lost forever. That’s why I’m so excited about the destinations we’ve identified; these are areas worthy of visiting and worthy of saving.”

 

The six destinations named “Best Wild Places” were hand-picked by the staffs of Field & Stream and TU. They offer outstanding wildlife habitat on public lands and unparalleled hunting and fishing opportunity; but also face threats from outside forces that could severely degrade or extinguish the quality of their assets in the years to come.

 

Field & Stream will begin a series of online features available at www.FieldandStream.com that detail each of the destinations. The articles provide travel information, virtual tours, hunting and fishing opportunities, wildlife viewing tips, and information on how to get involved in the effort to protect these areas. The magazine will also feature all six destinations in a feature story in its upcoming December/January print edition. 

 

The Best Wild Places are:

 

►The Roan Plateau, Colorado

Situated north of I-70 near the town of Rifle, the Roan Plateau is home to some of Colorado’s best trophy mule deer and elk hunting opportunities, as well as two populations of genetically pure and unique Colorado River cutthroat trout. Much of the Roan has been leased for oil and gas drilling, and the current plan, while on hold thanks to court proceedings, would likely impact both water quality and big-game migration corridors. The Roan’s natural gas can be developed, but it must be developed responsibly to protect the area’s priceless above-ground resources so important to anglers and hunters.

 

►The outlaw triangle, Utah, Wyoming and Colorado

So named because Butch and Sundance used this country as a hideout, it’ s located on the border of northeast Utah and southwest Wyoming. This unique complex of high-desert steppe and canyon country is priceless to anglers and hunters the world over. The Green River below Flaming Gorge is likely the West’s top tailwater fishery. To ensure this remains the case for generations to come, TU is seeking to have the canyon reach of the Green designated as an official scenic resource. On nearby Little Mountain, natural gas drilling threatens some of the West’s best pronghorn, mule deer and elk hunting, as well as a handful of streams home to native

 

Colorado River cutthroat trout. Protecting these sporting resources while a responsible drilling strategy is formed is of vital interest to sportsmen and women.

 

►The Alpine Triangle, Colorado

This slice of high-country real estate in Colorado’s prized San Juan mountains is not only a destination for bighorn sheep, elk, and deer hunters and backcountry trout anglers, it’s home to some cultural artifacts in the form of ghost towns, abandoned mines, and historic late 1800s structures. The area is also a destination for off road-vehicle users seeking to ride the Triangle’s vast network of four-wheel-drive roads and trails. Unfortunately, it is drawing the attention of the hard-rock mining industry, which could doom the area’s sporting resources.

 

The Gila Country, New Mexico

This vast region of remote fishing and hunting territory is home to great deer, elk and turkey hunting and fishing for the rare and native Gila trout and other game fish. Unfortunately, the area is being harmed by irresponsible off-road vehicle use. There’s a place for everybody in the Gila, but when one use begins to trump others, something must be done. TU hopes to work with the ORV community to designate legal and legitimate off-road trails while either relocating or closing trails that impact fish and game, and fishing and hunting.

 

The cabinet-Yaak Mountains, Montana

The Cabinet-Yaak Mountains rise along the northwest Montana border with Idaho and are home to some of the best wild country left in the Treasure State. Home to deer, elk, moose and other game animals, as well as west slope cutthroat trout and bull trout, the region is truly wild, but it lacks the protection that accompanies its description. Working with U.S. Sen. Jon Tester on his Forest Jobs and Recreation Act, TU hopes to protect much of the Cabinet-Yaak and several areas like it in Montana as wilderness, while ensuring jobs in the forest products industry for Montanans who often struggle to find work close to home.

 

►Blue Lakes and the Pine Forest Range, Nevada

This unique high-elevation lake chain in northwest Nevada is a sporting gem, and offers anglers the unique opportunity to catch tiger trout in an alpine setting. Additionally, the Pine Forest range offers great hunting for chukar, sage grouse, and mule deer, and has potential for elk and bighorn sheep. Finally, some of the streams running off the mountains have potential for Lahontan cutthroat trout reintroduction. Unfortunately, the management of the area today is held hostage by restrictive wilderness study designations. TU would like to protect the best of the best in the Pine Forest Range, while releasing other areas from wilderness study to enable to some habitat enhancement that is not allowed under current management. The idea would be to safeguard the existing sporting resources while creating new opportunity for public-lands hunting and fishing for future generations.

 

Fore more info on the Best Wild Places, visit www.FieldandStream.com


Prepare to be sued over Wolves

Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation warns all states

MISSOULA --With their latest petition to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, animal rights activists are preparing to sue for federally mandated release of wolves in every state, warn officials with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.

 

David Allen, RMEF president and CEO, says animal rights groups have learned that introducing wolves translates to major fundraising, and activists have found a way to exploit the Endangered Species Act—as well as taxpayer-funded programs that cover lawyer fees—to push their agenda and build revenue through the courts.

 

“There are now about 100,000 gray wolves in the U.S. and Canada, and over the past few years in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming, activists discovered that every wolf is also a cash cow,” said Allen. “If we don’t get some reform in federal laws very soon, we’re all going to be living in Jurassic Park. This is not about saving a lost species. It’s about money and special interest agendas.”

 

“Americans need to wake up,” he added, “because when you respond to those fundraising letters with photos of cute little wolf pups, you’re writing a check that our country’s rural and traditional lifestyles can’t cash. You’re eroding the fundamentals of America’s model for wildlife conservation.”

 

Allen said undermanaged wolf populations in the northern Rockies are compromising the health of other wildlife species—especially elk and other prey. In areas of Montana and Idaho where wolves share habitat with elk, calf survival rates now are too low to sustain herds for the future.

 

“How do animal rights groups who claim to defend wildlife justify elk calf survival rates below 10 percent? Clearly they have another agenda,” said Allen.  Participation in hunting and the funding it generates for conservation also are being negatively affected, as are local economies, livestock production and potentially even human safety.

Continuous lawsuits by activists have setback wolf control and management efforts, compounding problems and costs for states.

 

“Now imagine bringing these kinds of impacts to more populated states elsewhere in the U.S., and I think we’re looking at an unprecedented wildlife management disaster,” said Allen.

 

RMEF has helped to successfully restore elk populations in Kentucky, Tennessee, Wisconsin and other states where habitat is suitable and citizens support the effort. Elk restoration is being considered currently in Virginia and Missouri using these same criteria.

 

“There are two proven ways to restore a species,” said Allen. “Our way is offering to help with funding and expertise so long as the local public wants the species and the state can manage them. The other way is using lawsuits and loopholes to shove a project down people’s throats.”

 

Animal rights groups filed a petition July 20 complaining that wolves now inhabit just 5 percent of their former range in the U.S., and that wolf populations should be recovered in all significant portions of that range. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) responded by saying that it is reviewing “what is realistic and where the suitable habitat would be.” The agency’s review could be complete by late 2010 or early 2011.

 

“We urge USFWS to be very cautious in this evaluation and reject the rhetoric of the Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife, Earth Justice, Humane Society of the U.S. and other animal rights groups. Wolf re-introduction in the greater Yellowstone region was a classic example of ‘let’s get our foot in the door and then move the goal line,’ and should be warning enough. This is a fundraising strategy with anti-hunting, anti-ranching, anti-gun impacts, and the public needs to understand and see it for it is,” added Allen.


 

Michigan

DNRE Hosts Open House July 27 in Pigeon River Country

Forest Management Unit

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment will host an open house Tuesday, July 27, to provide information and receive public comment on proposed forest management treatments for 2012 in the Pigeon River Country Management Unit. The open house will be held from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Pigeon River Country Headquarters office, 9966 Twin Lakes Rd., in Vanderbilt.

 

The open house is an opportunity for the public to review proposed treatments and to provide input toward final decisions on those treatments. It also provides the public an opportunity to talk with foresters and biologists about issues

of interest. Maps and information regarding the proposed treatments will be available at the open house, and can be accessed at www.michigan.gov/ under the Forests, Land & Water section.

 

Each management unit is divided into smaller units or compartments to facilitate better administration of the resources. Compartments under review this year are in Forest, Nunda and Walker townships in Cheboygan County; and Corwith and Charlton townships in Otsego County.  The formal compartment review to decide on prescriptions for these areas is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 25, at the Pigeon River Country Headquarters.

 


MI offers Kayaking Class for Women on Aug. 21

The Michigan DNRE invites women to learn the basics of kayaking on Aug. 21. The class is being offered through the DNR’s "Becoming an Outdoors-Woman" (BOW) program and will be held 9 - 5 P.M. at Proud Lake Recreation Area in Milford.

 

Introduction to Kayaking is designed for women to learn kayaking safety, clothing, types of kayaks and paddles in a safe and comfortable environment. After getting familiar with the equipment, participants will have the opportunity to get out on the water and learn proper entry and exit of the kayak, proper paddle grip, an introduction to the “total body kayak stroke” and rescue techniques.

As with any BOW program, participants may determine their level of involvement. As a wrap-up to the course, participants can enjoy a leisurely paddle on the lake at their own pace. 

 

Instructors will provide a packet of information to each participant, which includes information on equipment, safety items and other resources. Registration deadline is Aug. 13 and the fee is $100 per person. Light snacks and beverages are provided, however participants should bring a lunch.  For registration forms,  and more info:  www.michigan.gov/bow , 517-241-2225 or: dnr-outdoors-woman@michigan.gov


New York

Lawsuit seeks Injunction against restrictive Gun Licensing Law

Fresh off gun rights activists’ major victory in Chicago, The Second Amendment Foundation has joined a lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, which demands a permanent injunction against a state law that requires applicants for gun permits to demonstrate “good cause.”

 

"American citizens should not have to demonstrate good cause in order to exercise a constitutionally-protected civil right," said SAF executive vice president Alan Gottlieb.  "Our civil rights, including the right to keep and bear arms, should not be subject to the whims of a local government or its employees,” he added.

The case at hand was brought by Westchester County residents lan Kachalsky and Christina Nikolov, who saw their permit applications denied on similar grounds.  Gun rights supporters have been buoyed by the recent Supreme Court decision in McDonald v Chicago, which struck down a nearly 30-year old handgun ban in that city.

 

In fact, Gottlieb pointed to that decision saying that it made it clear that the 2nd Amendment rights apply to both state and local governments.   “Our lawsuit is a reminder to state and local bureaucrats that we have a Bill of Rights in this country, not a ‘Bill of Needs’,” he stressed.

 

 


Ohio

Fish Ohio Day celebrates Lake Erie Tourism and Sport Fishing

PT. CLINTON, OHIO-Ohio's first couple, Governor Ted Strickland and First Lady Francis Strickland, were joined by members of the media,  representatives of the tourism industry, elected officials and conservation leaders to draw attention to Lake Erie during the Thirty-First Annual  Fish Ohio Day.

 

For the first time in event history, both the governor and his first lady were in attendance, which added some good-natured rivalry to the mix.  No one went without bragging rights - Governor Strickland caught one of the first walleye of the day and the first lady's boat caught more fish than a number of other boats, including the governor's boat. A total of 165 fish were caught.

 

Reeling in fish wasn't the only focus of today's events. Governor Strickland touted the importance of taking care of Ohio's great lake, which will continue to help strengthen the state's economic outlook. After a half-day of fishing under excellent conditions, attendees gathered to applaud local tourism efforts as well as discuss immediate threats like Asian carp and responsible land use.

 

"Ohio's future can never be separated from the future of Lake Erie, Ohio's greatest natural resource," said Governor Strickland. "Lake Erie is a great example of how the conservation of our resources and the growth of our economy can be compatible goals."

 

"Fish Ohio Day helps us focus attention on all that the lake represents, all that it means to our economy and our quality of life, and its importance to Ohio's future," added Governor Strickland.

 

Ohio's 1.1 million anglers spend an estimated $1.1 billion on fishing-related expenditures annually. Anglers contribute to local economies through the purchase of goods and services, as well as special taxes, licenses and other fees. Anglers support local jobs and wages, along with hotels, cottages and other lodging, marinas, charter boat services, restaurants, grocery stores, bait and tackle stores, marine suppliers and

 

other local businesses. Their expenditures spur a $480 million sport fishing industry along Lake Erie and create nearly 10,000 jobs.

 

"Statistics measure the benefits of the lake; but numbers don't tell the whole story," said ODNR Director Sean Logan. "Just as important as  numbers, the memories we have of time spent on the lake, afternoons fishing or boating, and just the sights and sounds of Lake Erie build  quality of life and a sense of community. Fish Ohio Day is one way to remind people of all that is at stake in the Lake Erie watershed."

 

Lake Erie is a magnificent recreation area and the resource is vital to economic development. Years of water quality restoration and wise use  management are paying off for Ohio. Fish Ohio Day brings needed attention to one of the state's top tourist draw and greatest natural resource.

 

Fifteen charter captains from the Lake Erie Charter Boat Association volunteered their boats so state leaders, members of the media,  representatives of the tourism industry and conservation leaders had an opportunity to experience fishing the lake's Western Basin. All of the  boats brought in fish today, making it one of the more successful Fish Ohio days in recent history.

 

The 495 pounds of fish caught at this event were donated to the Victory Temple Food Bank. Located in Sandusky, this food bank serves  families from the Port Clinton and Sandusky area.

 

Sponsored by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife, Lake Erie Charter Boat Association and Lake Erie  Shores & Islands, Fish Ohio Day celebrates Lake Erie as a destination for numerous recreational activities, such as fishing and boating, which  showcases Ohio's high-quality natural resources.

 

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all.  Visit the ODNR Web site at www.ohiodnr.com.


Castalia Hatchery to be temporarily closed to Visitors and Tours

Hatchery to remain open to trout fishing lottery permit holders

COLUMBUS, OH - Beginning August 1, the Castalia State Fish Hatchery will be temporarily closed to visitors and tour groups. The temporary closure will run through September 11, 2011, according to the Ohio DNR.  The closure is necessary to

ensure public safety during the construction phase of a new trout production building, which will increase trout rearing capacity at the facility.

 

Castalia Trout Fishing Lottery permit holders will still have access to Cold Creek on their assigned fishing date throughout the facility closure.


Other Breaking News Items

(Click on title or URL to read full article)

 

Minnesota crane hunting returning after 94 years

Minn. will have a sandhill crane hunting season for the first time in 94 years.  The season will run Sept. 4 to Oct. 10 and only in the northwest goose zone, which includes about six counties in NW Minnesota. The daily bag limit will be two birds, with a four-bird possession limit.

 

Federal ballast rule: Making progress
The United States Coast Guard is a year into working on their proposed rule for ballast water discharge. The goal of the ballast regulations is to prevent the spread of invasive species.

 

Governors, mayors to do own study on plugging Chicago Canal

Great Lakes governors and mayors - including Ill Gov. Quinn and Mayor Daley - are banding together to explore changes for the Chicago River to protect the world's largest freshwater system. The regional leaders announced plans to embark on a $2 million study to determine just what it will take to get that job done. 

 

Can a lawsuit stop the Asian carp?
It's not the first time the states have turned to the courts to force the federal government to crack down on the carp.

Debate emerges over oil drilling in the Great Lakes
It may surprise you that one of the hot issues in the Wisconsin U.S. Senate race this year concerns drilling for oil in the Great Lakes. Putting the politics aside, this got us wondering if drilling for oil in the Great Lakes is a real possibility.

Native species returning to Lake Huron
Lake herring could be making a comeback in Lake Huron, part of a cycle that has seen a resurgence of native species.

 

Wisconsin, 4 other states sue Chicago water district over carp
Wisconsin and four other Great Lakes states filed a lawsuit Monday against the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago to force changes on the Chicago River to halt the advance of the Asian carp into Lake Michigan.

 

Lake Ontario cormorants gobble up round gobies, fewer sport fish, study says

The double-crested cormorant is eating more round gobies and fewer sport fish, a recent study says.  From 2003 to 2007, researchers estimate that the cormorant ate 13 million fewer yellow perch and 600,000 fewer smallmouth bass in two large Lake Ontario cormorant colonies.

 

 

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the GLSFC, its officers or staff. 

Reproduction of any material by paid-up members of the GLSFC is encouraged but appropriate credit must be given. 

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