The COVID pandemic has led millions of Americans to connect with water—especially via fishing and boating—within the past two years. That can be great, as families discover (or rediscover) the healthy benefits of outdoor recreation. And with a bit of encouragement and support, hopefully we can dramatically grow the ranks of those who advocate for clean water. The more voices the better!
But, with that added attention comes more pressure on the resources. I believe angler pressure can be managed with a little bit of consideration, coordination and cooperation — the “three C’s” are more important now than ever.
It’s also time to talk more about invasive threats to our waters—things like mud snails and didymo and much more, which can be spread from one place to the next on things as simple as wading boots.
It doesn’t take a mathematician to realize that, with millions more boots in the water, the risk of spread obviously goes up. And a lot of the newbies to the rivers and lakes aren’t fully aware of how serious the threat is. So if you are new to fishing, please take a little time to learn more about how you can prevent problems. And if you’ve been fishing a long time, be kind and patient, and help to mentor those with whom you are sharing our great waters.
In addition to the links above, here’s a good primer from our friends at anchorfly.com, written by Dr. Linda Vance.