Skip to main content

Goals, Please

Goals, Please
Goals, Please

Whatcha think, anglers? What should fisheries management goals be for the new year and beyond?


As final casts are reeled in for '04, let's look ahead. Your input is needed, and always welcome. Let's focus on key steps desired in the unending conservation campaigns.

Your thoughts, we suspect, are much like ours. Here's a quick rundown on key issues and how we view them:

No-Fishing Zones. Known as Marine Protected Areas, marine reserves or by some other benign-sounding label, these zones refer to proposed large areas of ocean where even family-level, personal-use angling would be banned even when large-scale industrial catches are the reasons for perceived depletions.

Many of us believe that some of the worst imaginable junk science and questionable data are being used to promote the lockouts. The desired fish population levels can be achieved through many different traditional measures. The No-Fishing advocates ignore dozens of current success stories.

Right to Fish Act. This proposed bill would prohibit agencies from banning recreational fishing when it is not shown to be a problem, or when other standard regulations can protect fish stocks. Although basically a federal proposal, the right-to-fish principles should be enacted on a state basis as well. Some other states, in fact, already have done so.

Common Sense Manatee Laws. Although the worst of the unneeded, excessive off-plane slow zones promoted in the name of manatee protection have been rejected and discredited, the over-zealous manatee extremists are continuing their campaign to impede anglers and boaters over vast stretches of water, many where none of the animals frequent.

Contrary to Save the Manatee Club claims, it's now established that manatee populations have been rising for a quarter-century, to new highs in modern times.

Adjust Regulations. Tighten limits on some recreational fishing and consider eliminating sales of vulnerable inshore fish such as flounder, cobia, tripletail and pompano. We must continually evaluate the best use of a fish from a socio-economic basis and fairness to all citizens.

Close the unintended loophole that has allowed large-scale gill netting of Spanish mackerel with non-traditional “cast nets” that in reality entangle their catch.

Enlarge Hatchery Programs. Florida's well-run, but much too small, redfish hatchery is moving into a dormant year while Texas and many other areas are producing many millions of fish, increasing stocks and providing outstanding catch rates for the public. We should do as well.

Remove Shore Exemption. Resident shore fishermen were given a free ride from buying a fishing license in order to get the bill passed a dozen years ago. Most folks agree the exemption should go, but state officials drag their feet. Millions of dollars are lost, including federal matching funds going to other states.

Foster Our Fishing Heritage. By this, we refer not to the heritage of slaughtering tons of fish for the market, but to the conservation ethic of Teddy Roosevelt and others who believe that wildlife should be taken only with respect and care, while maintaining populations at high and sustainable levels.

FS




GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Hobie Mirage Lynx to the Next Level

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Hobie Mirage iTrek 9 Ultralight Packed with Features

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Extend Your Range in the Salt Marsh

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Florida's Capital Fishing

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Old Town Sportsman AutoPilot 120 FULLY RIGGED Fishing Machine

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Mounting Forward-Facing Sonar on A Kayak: Mounts, Scanning Applications and More!

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

On The Water with Old Town: Bass Fishing at PRIVATE GEORGIA LAKE

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

DECKED-OUT Old Town Sportsman BigWater ePDL+ 132 Complete WALK-THROUGH

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Dreambuild: Old Town ePDL Gets Rigged to the Hilt

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Kaku Zulu

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Kayak Hulls

Kaku Kayaks owner/designer Kevin Hawkins in Tarpon Springs, FL, shares personal reflections on the synchronous, symbioti...
Videos

Kayaks and Saltwater Flats

Florida Sportsman Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now