It's hard to imagine an organization that fills in all the gaps in the ideal world for protecting our native steelhead and salmon in the Pacific Northwest and allowed for harvest and retention or hatchery fish in some settings. Over the years I have belonged to many of them and for some reason or the other always felt at odds with one or more things within in each organization. Recently Trout Unlimited is taking a stance on this subject and is ambitious in wanted to save both native fish as well as allow harvest of hatchery fish in specific areas.
This process will be an interesting one, dealing with a region that is not fly oriented and wanting to draw from non fly anglers in order to keep a well maintained balance and perspective on our local fisheries. Trout Unlimited has always been looked down upon in this arena in regards to gear anglers who have been given a bad rap, so this will be interesting to say the least. I am skeptical myself in many ways much like in the past, but applaud the effort and willingness to bring forth a moderate view to our fisheries close to heart. I am also excited to hear that John McMillian, NOAA Biologist and son of Bill McMillian is leading the campaign here in Washington.
Wednesday November 20th, TU will be launching this campaign with meetings in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho and California. Please check them out and see what TU has to offer.
Regardless of my skepticism, I think everyone should get involved in organizations that help to protect our fish and the fisheries we hold dear. Organizations like TU, Native Fish Society, Wild Steelhead Coalition and Coastal Conservation Association all hold their place in helping to maintain and restore our fisheries.