The Native Fish Society under attack

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by GAT, Jun 23, 2013.

  1. We also convince our "co-managers" to do the same, and get them to go back to weirs and fish wheels.:rolleyes: From what I've heard, their hatchery mismanagement is worse than ours!
  2. One more off the wall comment before I give it up:

    I'd wager it would be much easier and much more well-received by those affected, if we tried to convince recreational fishing industry workers to find another career, rather than commercial fishers.

    I can more easily envision a cashier/clerk in a sporting goods store morphing into a keyboard monkey that spends his or her days imprisoned in a cubicle, than I can a commercial fisher doing the same.:D
    Jason Chadick and Steve Call like this.
  3. Everyone wants to fish so it seems to me that if there we NO hatchery fish it would put more strain on the wild fish and the populations would dwindle faster due to fishing. The hatchery fish increase the numbers hence but less strain on wild fish populations. Imagine how few fish we would have in lakes and rivers if we had no hatchery plants?

    Going to all wild fish is a nice rosy pipe dream that will never happen, the ship has sailed on this cause, we’d run out of fish in the rivers and lake in a short time. People like to fish and keep them a few and the Indians like to string their nets covering the width of the river and take them all regardless of the regulations the tribes agree too. We need the hatchery fish just to keep up with demand.

    Of course if you only C&R like I do, you are not dwindling any populations J
  4. Jim

    You mention important points, but I think you're missing or ignoring the concept that society doesn't "owe" commercial fishermen a living - at commercial fishing or any other endeavor for that matter. If the cost of producing hatchery fish significantly exceeds their value to society or in society's marketplace, then society should logically discontinue funding those hatcheries, salmon or steelhead. Of course the natural environment can not make up the difference with wild fish because society has already made the group decision (unknowingly for many, probably most) to trade valuable productive fish habitat for other societal priorities like forestry, roads, RRs, agriculture, cities and other residential uses, and other land use trade-offs. The horse-drawn buggy makers and buggy whip makers were not subsidized or re-trained to other careers when the horseless carriage came along and displaced them and their careers. Life ain't fair, but some times people don't seem to want to say so. And it won't be fair when the commercial gillnetters are out of business because society decides it can no longer afford to subsidize them, but it will be just. Justice and fairness aren't the same thing. It presently is not fair that taxpayers fund hatcheries to support functionally obsolete commercial gillnet fishermen.

    If the salmon and steelhead hatchery systems go to funding based on user fees, I don't know if I will be able to afford a fishing license!


  5. Hi Chris,
    The NFS advocates for what they feel is in the best interest of the fish.

    As far as economic value of hatchery programs, it appears that the taxpayer pays an exorbitant cost for hatchery steelhead production. We also see inflated energy bills, i.e. – the Baker river hatchery improvement as one example, for hatchery fish production. These fish obviously offer local businesses positive economic benefit by attracting recreational anglers. No one disputes such and I'm one of those beneficiaries.

    That being said, as I’m sure you’re well aware, increasingly we are seeing more scientific evidence as to the detrimental effects of hatchery winter steelhead on our Skagit/Sauk natives, i.e. – Ecological, Genetic and Productivity Consequences of Interaction between Hatchery and Natural-origin Steelhead in the Skagit Watershed, March 2013.

    While we will likely see further information arrive once the SNP genetic analysis is completed (it’s my understanding that this is currently occurring), the current data does confirm a level of introgression that should ignite significant concern in some areas of the Skagit/Sauk watershed.

    You mentioned the Cowlitz. The Skagit/Sauk watershed and Cowlitz would be an apples and oranges comparison in my mind; and, hatchery production is not an all or nothing thing. A basin by basin consideration would certainly appear to be a potentially viable option. What I wonder is, "What the level is of those Cowlitz river fish straying"?

    I’ve had numerous conversations with individuals at WDFW including one of the commissioners as to potential solutions which would increase recreational angling opportunities. I was told by one of those individuals, “That makes way to much sense. WDFW would never do that.”

    I think you would find that most of us involved with NFS are reasonable and willing to compromise if it's based on sound reason and science. Anecdotal information and personal interests don't always correlate with what’s best for the fish.

    Given my occupation and my thoughts regarding our native fish, I may just go blow up my own car.

    I'm always happy to talk fish over a cold one.
  6. Wow! I just typed out a long reply to Salmo_g's last comment, and It wouldn't post, I got an "internal server error" notice, my message disappeared, and yet I am still logged in.
    What's the matter, can't the server handle the truth?:confused:
  7. No.... it can't handle the truth!!!! :)
  8. Basically I wrote that agreed with Sg, and that I was just trying to explain the mindset of the commercial fishers I know.

    This is a zero-sum game here, depending on the number of fish. There are already too many players, and to set things right, we are all going to have to suffer some cuts to our fishing expectations.

    Edit, 6/27):
    Up until recently, the Willapa Basin was the only anadromous basin in the state of WA where there is no "co-managed" Tribal gill net fishery, and until I mentioned this to a local friend who set me straight, I thought that was still the case.
    My friend told me that the Chinook Tribe recently (2009) moved its tribal headquarters from Illwaco to Bay Center. It wasn't until 2001 that the US Gov't finally acknowledged that the Chinooks were indeed a tribe with certain treaty rights. My friend tells me that the Chinook Tribe have been negotiating the details for a tribal fishery in Willapa Bay. I don't know any details, or anything else about that, though. His words were "They have begun agitating for their share of the action."

    Prior to finding this out, I thought that WDFW didn't have to deal with "co-managers" in Willapa Bay.

    I've got to see if I can find out more about this.
  9. Those were my own feelings. Most of the other locals out here don't like C&R and many ignore the fishing regulations. We probably would have little success getting them to change their way of thinking. They would side with the farmers, loggers, and commercial fishers before they took sides with "urban elitist fly fishers" or "wild fish enthusiasts."
  10. One of the statements I wrote that mysteriously disappeared is that most commercial fisher I know operate in more than one, often several, venues. Thus, you can take gill nets away from them, and they can still continue to fish commercially in their other venues.
    The gill netter and crabber can go back to being a crabber and troller.
    The shrimp-trawler/tuna&salmon-troller/crabber doesn't need to look forward to gill netting for his retirement.
  11. I just talked to a friend who works the deck of a crabber, and since crabbing slowed down here and crabbers in Puget Sound, BC and Alaska are doing well, keeping the price down, they quickly switched over to working prawn pots. They have a whole string of 'em set out on a longline, as opposed to individual lines with crab buoys.

    Makes me suspect that some gill netters put out a lot of crocodile tears. Its really lucrative for them, so they don't want to give it up.
  12. That was a long conversation with yourself, Jim. Bored?
    hookedonthefly likes this.
  13. Native Fish Society advocates for wild fish, many other user groups are advocating for people and their allocation of fish. If you find that at odds with your desires, so be it. I just think that someone needs to speak for the fish, and not our( the collective our), self interests.

    The commercial fleet is a shadow of what it once was, and not the most important of the 4 H's.

    Chris D, you gotta quit those hatcery brats cold turkey Bro, they're like a drug man, they'll kill ya.;)
  14. I think we both know that Chris isn't into the brats. He's just like the rest of us...he wants to fish for steelhead; but, it's a fine line. The question is, in my mind, how do we get there with the best interest of our precious native steelhead at heart.

  15. A feeble atempt at humor Ed.
  16. My apologies...I'm a little must be the apple pie...btw, it's not a pie.
    constructeur likes this.
  17. I'm trying to understand the thought process that says we need to "buy out" the commercial fishermen because they have a right to the resources of the people in the state. Did we "buy out" the travel agents when internet booking became the norm, did we buy out the buggy whip manufacturers, did we buy out the service station attendants, things change and they need to change too. The state has a constitutional obligation to manage its resources for the best return for the citizens and that has shown that a sport caught fish is worth ten times the return of a commercial fish. It is time to suck it up and do the right thing.
  18. Is that a native fish out of the water, Jim? Thank you my friend...!
  19. if you read the actual study you realize that they got the success they did because they did not include the hatchery fish that produced zero offspring. the program also produced a higher % of jacks than a wild population would.

    when you don't include unsuccessful spawners, it's pretty easy to show increased spawning success.
  20. negotiating from a compromised position won't result in much real change.

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