There is less than a week left to comment on the AEP (Alberta Environment and Parks) survey regarding a recovery program for native species and its proposed closures and regulation changes. I urge you all to take part in this survey and let your voice be heard. While the survey has good intentions, it is missing the mark. The proposal simply ignores catch & release as a proven method for fish sustainability and instead offers two options, both of which are… WHACK.
One option suggests a 5 year fishing closure and the second option would be an increase to keep limit allowances on multiple rivers. Moving away from C&R is a good way to damage fragile fish populations. The survey is troublingly misleading as the options it presents do not take into account potential consequences, such as increased fishing pressure on other sensitive rivers that will not be facing closures OR fewer, smaller fish due to an increase in harvest/keep limits.
Anglers are going to take the blame, when industry and habitat fragmentation is the real culprit. This is a major bummer when so many other options exist to help recover native species. I would suggest voting no to these survey questions and request that proper protocol be followed, with a review period that involves the public. There’s a link in my profile if you’d like to participate.
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