Coastal Maine Fish Species

The first question in my new Sportsmen Say Survey is about this issue. Please read this column and then go to my website, select “Sportsmen Say Survey” on the website and complete the survey. Make your voice heard on this critical issue! The legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife will receive a report and recommendations from Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife on this issue on February 11.

The Issue

DSCN4012 A management plan for wild brook trout in waters that haven’t been stocked in 25 years, the so-called “B list, ” along with a list of those waters, is scheduled for delivery to the IFW Committee on Tuesday, February 11. This will be a hot topic, focused on the use of live fish as bait in some of those waters.

The legislature overturned a decision by DIF&W and its Advisory Council to ban the use of live bait on four B list waters last year, but also pulled language from a bill that Representative Jeff McCabe sponsored at my request that directed the agency to submit an updated B list and a policy and management plan for waters on that list.

The legislature also ordered DIF&W to adopt rules governing the use of live fish as bait on waters that contain native and wild brook trout, while designating those rules as “major substantive, ” meaning they will be subject to the approval of the legislature. That has not happened yet.

I expect the department will only present a policy for wild brook trout waters, and dodge the more complicated and controversial directive to create a list of waters where that policy will be applied. That fight is likely to come later. First, they’ll try to establish a credible policy and win the legislature’s support for that policy.

Here are my thoughts on the issue, expressed in a column I originally posted last fall.

Sourdahunk’s Lessons – Why not the best for Maine’s brook trout?

With a stunning sunset to the west and a ring of pink clouds surrounding the magnificent Mount Katahdin and its surrounding mountains to the east, I had to put down my fly rod for a moment and enjoy the views. For the past 90 minutes, my view had been focused almost entirely on the Yarn fly at the end of my line.

You know how it is when the brook trout are biting. A hatch of the famous Green Drakes was bringing up the trout, and plenty of them were mistaking my Yarn fly for the real thing. I had already hauled in more than a dozen, and despite the intensity of my focus, missed a lot of strikes.

Nesowadnehunk (pronounced Sour-da-hunk) is the largest fly-fishing-only lake in Maine. It isn’t stocked and is chock full of native brookies.

The requirement that a water be limited to fly fishing is still controversial in Maine. I don’t know why that is, except that many anglers hate change. We settle into our fishing methods and cling to them like they are the Holy Grail.

You supposed to be a marine?

2011-03-01 16:44:21 by not-a-clown-fish

Bat·fish   /ˈbætˌfɪʃ/ Show Spelled
[bat-fish] Show IPA
–noun, plural ( especially collectively ) -fish, ( especially referring to two or more kinds or species ) -fish·es.
1. any of the flat-bodied, marine fishes of the family Ogcocephalidae, as Ogcocephalus vespertilio, common in the southern Atlantic coastal waters of the U.S.
2. a stingray, Aetobatis californicus, found off the coast of California.
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