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Monday, January 7, 2008

Decisions, Decisions and More Decisions OSR #3-2008

I recently attended a Lake Ontario Stakeholder meeting that included discussion on topics such as recent egg taking efforts, baitfish assessments, lamprey control updates, creel census data, DEC Fishery Bureau staffing and possible fishing regulation changes. The stakeholder group is limited to about 25 selected participants who represent various Lake Ontario fishing interests such as recreational lake and tributary anglers, charter and guide factions, fishing clubs, business groups and tourism agencies. It's a broad spectrum of interests that help DEC make important decisions after conferring with the various participants.

It's rough out there

Low Water

     DEC is planning to publish a report on how we might deal with future low and warm water tributary flows so as to better insure successful egg harvest. Since the forces of nature are the major player in this annual happening, the report will review many possible action scenarios that may take place depending on actual conditions occurring during the particular egg taking season. Crucial decisions will need to be made. I believe this is a positive step to make certain that our fishery remains healthy.

     Lake fishing is certainly much different than angling in the streams. For example, foul hooking in the lake is not the problem as it is in the tributaries where foul hooking techniques have been perfected and are used by some. Policing the fishing effort in the streams takes much more in enforcement man hours to stem illegal actions that oftentimes are the preferred catching method. The effort to control tributary angling methods has led to a myriad of regulation changes over the years. Long leaders, short leaders, narrow gap hooks, wider gaps hooks, treble hooks, single hooks, the regulation rules frequently change. The reason is that certain anglers always find ways to beat the system, so the regulation re-tooling effort is a sometimes feeble effort to stay a step ahead. You guessed it, more decisions and a fatter more complex rule book..

     You would not believe the differences that occur between those who fish one way and those who want it another way. Let's practice catch and release, no, let’s practice catch and keep. To me both methods are a matter of choice and if you choose one way, realize and accept that the other way is OK too. This is why the diverse make up of the Stakeholder group is important. Before a decision of magnitude is reached all sides are invited to present their opinions and recommendations and so far this method has been a success. Many times DEC is vehemently criticized for a decision and sometimes rightly so. However they really do make an effort to listen to the fishery users, combine user information with scientific data and then make a decision. Believe me when I tell you that some of the issues that arise are extremely complex and when you stir in the emotionally skewed rationale behind certain thought processes things can get downright cantankerous. Rarely are all parties happy, but it is still a good decision making procedure.

     Dealing with fish is the easy part of DEC's job. Dealing with fishermen, well that's another story.
Another Decision: I have decided that I will not participate in any fishing shows in 2008. The bloated costs associated with these events, declining attendance, and a transition from pure sportsmen's exhibits to eye glass cleaners and condo raffles has basically turned me off. Today's sport shows are phenomena that truly makes me wish for the old days when the array of exhibits were dedicated to pure outdoor sports themes.

     My years of experience, super fishing vessel, great equipment, great fishing location out of Oswego, NY, and a loyal customer base allow me to do it my way. My ever expanding web site and newsletter presents a state of the art approach to reach new customers and to keep current customers well informed with regard to the fishery and our fishing opportunities. Probably the biggest thing I have going for me is my loyal customer base. Your referrals keep us well booked and for that we are most thankful to you. 

     Oh yeah, there is another reason why "no sport shows for me"; I want to stay in Florida until old man winter is on the wane. Can't blame me for that can you?

Now that was an easy decision-

Posted By: Capn Gerry Bresadola @ 10:51:22 AM


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