The news that Native Fish Society has sent notice of it's intent to sue Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, NOAA and others because of the situation concerning the Sandy river has brought out all kinds of opinions on the internet.
I shake my head in disbelief at the utter stupidity of some and the selfishness of others. The old cliche of fly fishing elitists has surface yet again and while some of us fly fishers can indeed come off that way in other circumstances but this situation is different.
This is not a fly fishing versus gear fishing fight it's all about saving a population of wild winter steelhead and forcing a state agency to live by the law.
For your amusement I have selected a few of the more jaw dropping statements by "sports" fishermen
*I have not corrected any spelling in these quotes
- NFS solicits fisherman to promote preservation by spreading fear and absolute distortion of the facts. This lawsuit is all about differences in ethics, not science....
- I love to catch fish, if we put the screws to the hatchery program and they have to stop what does that leave... oh thats right an ESA species and can I catch those... umm no
- I dont know about the group but if they are fly guys maybe they are mad do to not catching any fish while I am slaying them on spinners all day long
- NFS preys upon ethical values such as catch & release and spreads its disallusions that wild fish can simply be restored by shutting down hatcheries....
- The track record of groups like the NFS speaks for itself - you can claim it's not a fly vs gear/bait move - but it's smoke & mirrors, as their next most likely step is to push for fly only regs to go along with C&R only.
- Native Fish Society is enemy #1 for sport fisherman!
- I suggest for all of you that are not familiar with the composition of NFS membership, google the blogs; "The Quiet Pool" (Thanks for the public plug Ty) OR "Whitefishcantjump" These guys only wish is to have these rivers to themselves so the can swing flies by themselves.
That is just a few of the better ones and while it is funny it is also disturbing that supposed sportsmen think this way. Are they stupid? When it comes to facts and an understanding of what is going on then I would have to say yes they are absolutely stupid when it comes to wild vs hatchery matters.
Are they selfish? Without a doubt! They are are only concerned about how many fish they can catch and kill.
This is the exact reason why I have never gotten involved in any issues others than wild salmonids conservation. I could not care less if these so called sports fishermen get more salmon and why I think they are little better than the gill netters they claim to despise.
I am not saying that all gear fishermen are this ignorant or selfish...far from it because I know many that care about our wild salmon, trout and steelhead populations as much or more than many fly fishermen.
This is all a symptom of a much bigger illness. Our rivers and our wild fish have been mismanaged to near extinction by ODFW and other state and federal agencies.
I know many of these arm chair biologists but I never see any of them at any meeting where allocation is not the topic. They hide behind their computer keyboards and mouth off while never getting involved.