Category Archives: Save the World

The Striped Bass Conversation

People are catching stripers right now, that’s documented. Also documented is what anglers out almost every day are seeing–and not seeing.

Here’s a post from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation about how oxygen depletion is affecting striped bass.

Here’s another from Reel-Time where Capt. John McMurray details who’s really killing all the bass.

Here’s a follow up from McMurray on why we should eat bluefish not bass.

Here’s a post about how recreational anglers have lost the high ground.

There’s a 1@32pledge going around.

But maybe, for now, let ‘em all go.

striped-bass-release

How Far Is 1000 Miles?

Half the Mississippi River.

Almost as long as the Snake River.

Longer than the St. Lawrence River, the Ohio, the Green, and the White.

Maybe in more relatable terms, it’s farther than a plane flight from LA to Denver.

This is the scope  of the initiative being undertaken by Trout Unlimited and Orvis, who are joining forces to open up 1,000 miles of fishable habitat across the US.

The 1000 Miles Project is one that is easy to rally behind. Too many fights in the environmental realm seem to succeed in making people angry but fail in channelling emotion into action. This campaign is all about action, with an identifiable target and attainable goals.

The target? Culverts. As stated on the TU Blog: “Culverts–those big pipes that carry entire waterways under roads and trails–are stream-stealing culprits. If they’re old, or poorly designed, they can be barriers to upstream migration of trout and salmon. By simply removing or repairing culverts at stream crossings, we can open significant chunks of habitat for fish … and fishing.”

Together Orvis and TU have targeted streams and waterways around the country where removing or restoring faulty culverts will benefit trout and salmon habitat. (For a list of waters, click on the TU and Orvis links below.)

It’s a simple, beautiful plan that all anglers can endorse, regardless of geographic location or political affiliation.

1000 miles raises the possibility of this exponentially

Should you choose to donate money to Trout Unlimited for this cause, Orvis will match your donation–promising $90,000 in matching funds.

The simple math is: 1,000 more miles of fishable habitat will multiply the number of fishable fish exponentially, and everybody wins.

For more information, and more detail on how culverts affect fish habitat, go to:

Trout Unlimited

and

Orvis.com

The Opossum Migration and Other Signs of Doom

Minnesota is an underrated and badass state. Partly because Minneapolis ranks among the great American cities I have visited, and mostly because everywhere around it there is water. (And that’s just around the metropolis; I hope to one day get up to the boundary waters and other places.)

Sunrise in Minnesota

But a trip there last week drove home that climate change is fast becoming our reality. Reading about far-off disasters such as the Arctic ice crisis should be shocking but it’s not always. It’s all abstract and far away and you can grow inured to it until you’re numb.

But then last week I was north and east of St. Paul and somebody saw a possum and I took this to be a sign of doom. They are not supposed to be in Minnesota but keep pushing farther north. Scientists in this NPR report said it’s more a sign of human development than global warming, but unchecked sprawl is no less disconcerting. Sprawl ramps up infrastructure, encroachment, and water and energy demands.

But what really freaked me out was the talk of the presence in a lake in nearby Stillwater of the amoeba of death. The amoeba, called Naegleria Fowleri,  is naturally occurring in freshwater all over the world, but reportedly grows when the water temperature exceeds 85 degrees F. I understand it’s in Texas and Florida, but why is water getting that hot in Minnesota?

Maybe I’m being alarmist in these cases but when I watch this video, feeling a little freaked out seems more than appropriate.