Friday August 29th, 2014
I posted this on Facebook, after seeing too many big fish held aloft like the Stanley cup, and found out there are people out there in Internet land that are as pissed about this, nope more pissed about this than I am.. damn good thing too, they are a lot smrter than I am.. chew on this SA-Life for a bit and tell me what you think. Here is the link to it.. Les Booth is a damn deep thinker and is on the right track as far as I am concerned, and yes maybe ahead of his time, or just in time.
Damn it's sad to see all these big Bull trout, and other large fish, held up by their throats, with a big sag in their backbones and a vice grip around the tail. Fish anatomy being what it is there is some damaging pressures on vital organs and nervous systems.
For what? So the world can see your straggly face and beady eyes or painted finger nails and smudged lipstick behind a stressed and damaged fish. Your hero shot and comic Buffs and fancy poses, are very vain and not flattering.
Remember that with out those big fish all you're doing is practicing casting in a pretty spot. Protect, respect and nurture the resource!!
I have written, talked about -extensively- and practice a very simple process that entails a straight-forward approach to a set of principles that guide me in my fishing activity.
When you hit that number ... you are done. It'll give new meaning to - "studying the water closely".
I love to catch fish. I love to catch a LOT of fish. And I love it as much as the next person. But... at what price?
For several years now I've practiced the following guidelines in my own personal fishing activity. I call them the
Pronounce it and Promote it, as "SAY LIFE")
You betcha these are a pretty tough. Some will no doubt even say they are austere; many even say they are an unreasonable, set of guidelines. Impossible to maintain.
And, I will agree...
For a society who has all but abandoned the notion of self-control in favor of a dangerous, deep embrace of a misguided, self-ordained and so-intoned - god-given right of self-indulgence; a notion which is sustained daily in our social education of young and old alike; I can see where it may be perceived as austere.
But, please do yourself - and future generations - two (2) genuine favors.
1) Ask the important questions: get the facts and weed out the editorializations.
2) Support the best actions TODAY, that will provide a lasting TOMORROW - based upon these three simple questions:
Just how austere are these guidelines... really?
How do the likely results compare:
Having no place to fish
This is where the anti-fishing sentiment growing within society; the ever expanding mentally-urbanized populace; who are physically and mentally out-of-touch with the reality of life in the outdoors, is pushing towards.
This is where the mislabeled outdoor sportsman, whose greed-guided consumptive actions do very little to exhibit the practice of age-old notion of fair-chase Sportsmanship. Their actions and attitudes merely serve to aid and abet those who want to destroy our Fishing [equally at danger: HUNTING] Heritage.
Both extremes lead to only one very sad and avoidable conclusion:
I have been ridiculed by many fellow fishermen and fisherwomen, saying my proposal is just, too restrictive ... and unnecessary. I have been booed as a Chicken Little, falsely decrying the fall of our fishing sky.
Regardless of the rhetoric imposed and exposed on all sides, we must be honest with our motives and our actions. If we want to retain the rights to our Fishing Heritage, we, the fishermen and fisherwomen will have to step-up and make the necessary changes that will help us retain those rights to practice our Fishing Heritage.
The guidelines set forth in the SA-LIFE Manifesto are only too, restrictive when:
Viewed through the eyes of a person unwilling to accept a level of personal control - that feels (perceived by desire as) uncomfortable - but is necessary to insure tomorrow's fishermen/fisherwomen will be doing so in real water, with real fish.
Yes, our current legal system says we can continue to conduct the act of C&R for as many fish as we can attract to our hook(s) on a daily basis - within the confines of a posted fishing season regulations.
But ask yourself this basic question:
âJust because it's legal, does it always mean it's sensible... or right?â
Strong emphasis on always and right.
I'm sure any of us can think of a number of occurrences, events and activities that were deemed - by the social powers as perfectly legal - but, society would have been far better off had they never been applied!
Think about it... CHANGE is NEEDED - NOW!
If only 50% of fly-fisherman were to adhere to Axioms 2 and 7 ... we'd not even be seeing the experiments conducted on C&R mortality rates; by-product mortality would be a ânon-issue'.
Sure it feels difficult at first. Any change is hard... and scary. Initially I felt cheated. But, before long - and quite frankly I was amazed at how quickly the adjustment fell into sync - I was enjoying more about the area in which I was fishing, than ever before, and my fishing experience improved; immensely.
By nature, seeking the details is a strong motivator. However, being so wrapped up in the process of fishing, learning suffered, the surroundings faded to black and I missed far more than realized.
We are not alone in this dilemma. Many of our fellow fishers experience the same experience deprivation. This discovery begins the revelation, the process of regaining the missing dimension of the inquiring motivator. We begin to see all over again.
A sad result of the high-intensity we pay to our fishing actions is - we miss many equally, if not more interesting, scenes, events and activities than - we even experience at the end of the fly line.
Suprisingly, even more about the fishing and the fish and their environs, were learned as a result of these changes. Slowing down, taking time and internalizing a richer, cleaner, clearer, more realistic picture of the environs being fished, made me not only a better fisherman, but a far more enriched human being.
After a while, I looked forward to going fishing every bit as much for all the side-bar-benefits of fishing as I did for the actual fishing itself.
Yes... this is what is commonly referred to as, the Experience. Hey, don't knock it - until you've experienced it.
The value of enjoying our surroundings, is what actually brings most folks to fly-fishing in the first place. So, for most fly fisherman and fisherwomen, it's more a matter of, â...dancin' with the one what brung ya', rather than merely doin' the dance.
Food for thought...
Unfortunately we have a few picky eaters in the fly-fishing community. Let's hope those who would slough this off as just so much brie and wine sauce, would actually do some research into the actions, words and hearts of those who were our forefathers of fly-fishing. Otherwise, the future is rapidly moving toward a rather grim prospect.
Food for thought indeed. I do hope this âManifesto of the Seven Axioms for Low-Impact Fishing Ethicsâ is chewed on, considered and discussed, by each person who reads it, for a long time.
But not for too, long. We really don't have all that much time. This is really a matter of LIFE and DEATH. If we take too long, we will bog down in details and in the meantime we loose all of what we hold so dearly.
The LIFE or the DEATH of our Fishing Heritage is at stake. So, for us now and future generations just...
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