BoatUS ANGLER: RecycledFish Stewardship Tips

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Recently, in Waterford, Ireland, “drivers and passers-by were surprised to see hundreds of fish spilled across a road.”  According to a local spokesperson, “it was probably a lorry that had a bit too much fish, and probably a few fish on top of it slid off, and onto the road.” 

While the spill was inadvertent, it does serve to remind us that all anglers, commercial and recreational, should take steps to ensure that the fish they harvest make it from the stream to the table. 

Most recreational anglers will not have to deal with a truck full of fish. It is not likely that the five fish limit of stocked trout harvested from a local lake will fall out of the trunk. But a day’s harvest of carp with a bow might fill the bed of a pickup. And, unless the harvest is secured, it could end up on the highway. 

Inadvertent waste is certainly not wonton. A prosecutor would have difficulty bringing charges if the waste of fish was accidental. This is especially true if one considers the true cases of wanton waste that one reads about. Whether that is the case or not, it is better not to tempt fate. Whenever you have a load of fish that you have harvested, whether you have only a few or a pickup load, make sure that your harvest is secure and will not be accidentally spilled on the road as you drive home.

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