This blog highlights conservation issues we feel are important to fly fishers and others who love outdoor sports, and we cover the latest and most pressing environmental issues affecting wildlife habitat and resource conservation. Orvis believes that, if we are to benefit from the use of our natural resources and environment, we must be willing to act to preserve them. Therefore, the company commits 5% of pre-tax profits to protecting nature.

Maine’s Kennebec River Protected from Bait Fishing


Written by: Eric Rickstad

The Maine Dept. of Marine Resources rejects effort to open the Kennebec River to bait fishing for striped bass during May and June.

In a fact-finding document released Friday, April 21st, Maine DMR stated: “The proposed regulation is not consistent with the previous conservation efforts adopted by DMR to address the decline of striped bass.” 23 pages of public comments showed that a majority of anglers opposed the change that would allow bait fishing with circle hooks and a sizable boundary reduction. The effort to liberalize the existing regulation was initiated by a group of charter boat operators in Boothbay Harbor and The Recreational Fishing Alliance. Proponents stated that circle hooks have a very low catch and release mortality when compared to J hooks and it was discriminatory to exclude that particular gear type from the regulations. DMR responded by stating: “Increased fishing effort on native and migratory striped bass population will occur if the proposed rule changes are adopted. This increased effort would be the result of participation in the fishery by individuals fishing from shore, boats, guides operating in formerly closed portions of the spawning area and latent effort that would become active once the rule changes occurred.”

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Orvis-Supported Rhino Conservation Leader Wins Esteemed Goldman Prize


Written by: Eric Rickstad


 

 black rhino

The black rhino of Zimbabwe is threatened by poachers

 

Orvis has learned that Raoul du Toit, African Rhino Program Coordinator for the International Rhino Foundation, is the well-deserved recipient of a 2011 Goldman Environmental Prize! Raoul’s grassroots mission and effort to save the black rhinos of Zimbabwe from poachers caught our eye last year, resulting in a partnership Orvis is proud to support and promote as one of our own 2011 Orvis Commitment efforts.

The Prize recognizes individuals from six regions around the world for sustained and significant efforts to protect and enhance the natural environment, often at great personal risk. Raoul plans to put his award right back into the Lowveld Rhino Trust programs in Zimbabwe to continue his good work.

To learn more, or to make an easy donation to help save the Rhinos of Zimbabwe from poachers who kill the rhinos for their horns, please go to our Orvis Commitment . Orvis will match your donation, and together we can all support Raoul and the International Rhino Foundation in an effort to protect the black rhino from poachers.

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TU’s On the Rise Visits Libby Camps in Maine


Written by: Eric Rickstad


brookie
Wild Maine brook trout

Maine is the last best stronghold for wild, native brook trout in the United States; and nobody knows those brook trout, their watersheds, and the precarious balance to keep the population healthy than the Libby family of Libby Camps on Millinocket Lake. The Libbys have operated Libby Camps in the North Maine Woods since 1890, and are now in their fifth generation of family ownership.

This week, Jed Fiebelkorn, host of Trout Unlimited’s On the Rise gets his feet wet on some of the region’s pristine brook trout waters with none other than former TU CEO, Charles Gauvin, who now has a little more time on his hands to pursue his beloved brook trout after stepping down as TU CEO in 2010. Matt Libby, the owner of Libby Camps hosts Jed and Charles on a fly-out adventure in northern Maine.

Check out the show to see the greatest, and most remote, brook trout fishing left in the United States, where wild, native brookies can still be measured by pounds not inches; and how Libby Camps, TU, and others have worked to make sure it remains that way.

You can check out the show on the Sportsman Channel on:

Mon 4/11/2011 1:00PM

Tue 4/12/2011 10:30PM

Fri 4/15/2011 7:30AM

Sat 4/16/2011 12:30PM

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Hatcheries Are No Substitute for Real River Restoration: Wild Steelehead Coalition Sheds Light on Threatened Rivers


Written by: Eric Rickstad


thebigboy2

photo by Mike Daley


In rivers throughout the Northwest, from the mighty Columbia to Seattle’s urban Green River, wild steelhead populations are desperately hanging on. The steelhead are listed as threatened, and even hatchery efforts to increase their numbers are failing. Habitat loss, dams, and warming waters caused by climate change, appear to be sealing their fate. In a great piece by Green Acre Radio,(brought to our attention by the Wild Steelhead Coalition)Martha Baskin visits the Soos Creek hatchery on the Green River and talks with wild steelhead advocates including veteran fisheries biologist Don Chapman, who’s been monitoring the situation for fifty years. Click here to go to the audio and give it a listen.

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