The National Fish Habitat Action Plan has unveiled the 2011 10 “Waters to Watch” list, a collection of rivers, streams, lakes and estuaries that will benefit from strategic conservation efforts to protect, restore or enhance their current condition over the next year.
The mangrove and reef ecosystem around Ambergris Caye is one of the most productive fly-fishing locations in Belize with vital habitat for bonefish, permit and tarpon. When Ali Flota, owner of the Orvis-endorsed El Pescador Lodge approached Orvis Travel about supporting the Ambergris Caye Eco Challenge to promote conservation and awareness of the complex ecosystem, we donated a $500 gift card. It went to the most Eco-Friendly Team. The winners are Irvin Chacon and Shadany Bradley.
The 42-mile, two-day kayak race, which attracts dozens of participants from across the country, is designed to promote awareness, protection and the conservation of mangroves, lagoons, reefs and the diverse species found in Belize. The race starts on the stunning lagoon side of Ambergris Caye and finishes the next day in San Pedro where a celebration awaits participants, including everything from barbecue and ceviche competitions to live music.
Peter Brannen of the Martha’s Vineyard Gazzette wrote a great piece on the drastic decline in striped bass stocks that has state and federal officials scrambling to protect the fish, but many recreational fishermen say the government isn’t moving fast enough.
“It’s really scary,” said Cooper (Coop) Gilkes 3rd, owner of Coop’s Bait and Tackle shop in Edgartown, who has seen the haul from the annual June catch-and-release striper tournament fall dramatically. “At one point we had somewhere between 1,500 and 2,000 fish weighed in on one night. Last year there were 100 and it’s like a staircase going all the way down to last year. It’s just dropped every year.”
Last year, Mr. Gilkes said the annual springtime sea worm hatch in the Island’s coastal ponds — an event that historically attracts stripers by the hundreds — had “just about failed” after years of under-performance.
“It’s mind-boggling that we could get to this point with everybody watching,” he said.
Check out this week’s episode of TU’s On the Rise (trailer above) which takes place on the Battenkill and at the Orvis fly rod shop. Over the past several years, Orvis has raised more than $100,000 to help TU and the state of Vermont restore key in-stream cover to the famous Battenkill. The result is a success story, with restored stretches seeing fish returning in strong numbers; up to a 500% increase in some stretches. In this episode of On the Rise, Orvis CEO Perk Perkins speaks with host Jed Fiebelkorn about the Orvis Commitment to conservation. I was lucky enough to fish with Jed and show him some of the restored water. We caught some nice fish and had a great fall morning of fishing and wandering the river. You can watch the entire show this week on the Sportsman Channel.
Mon 5/16/11 1:00PM
Tue 5/17/011 10:30PM
Fri 5/20/011 7:30AM
Sat 5/21/11 12:30PM
In this week’s On the Rise episode, host Jed Fiebelkorn visits the Klamath River and fishes for its wild steelhead. The Klamath has faced may challenges in the past (and today) but much is being done to help restore this famed river. Check out some great fishing and even better conservation work this week on the Sportman Channel. What’s your favorite river in need of restoration and protection?
Mon 5/9/2011 1:00PM
Tue 5/10/2011 10:30PM
Fri 5/13/2011 7:30AM
Sat 5/14/2011 12:30PM
The first Friday of May brought Vermont’s annual Green Up Day, and folks here at Orvis took the afternoon off to walk the roadsides and clean up the trash left behind over the winter. It’s amazing what we find each year…
The cutthroat, named for the vibrant orange or red slash marks along its lower jaw, is Montana’s state fish. Historically, the westslope cutthroat ranged west of the Continental Divide throughout Montana but their numbers are rapidly declining due to hybridization with rainbows, degradation of habitat, and warmer temperatures. More and more fisherman are catching cut-bows and fewer and fewer anglers are catching true cutthroat. In order to help preserve the next generation of trout in Montana, please avoid stepping on redds this spring. Click Read More to learn more about what spawning redds look like, so you can avoid them and benfit the next generation of cutthroat and rainbows.
It’s been an exciting spring on the Upper Clark Fork. The Clark Fork Coalition and Trout Unlimited each hired additional staff to work specifically on restoring priority tributaries in the upper basin—so a big welcome is due to Andy Fischer of CFC and Casey Hackathorn of TU.
Winter has been holding on a little longer this year across western Montana, and the snow just keeps on falling. But the cold hasn’t kept CFC staff from hitting the field to work on dozens of projects in the upper river. Here’s a quick overview on tributaries receiving funding through The Orvis Commitment: